ANSES and IFREMER strengthen their cooperation regarding contaminants in fishery products and the overall health of fish and molluscs

Roger Genet, Director General of ANSES, and François Jacq, CEO of the French Research Institute for Exploitation of the Sea (IFREMER), have today signed a framework partnership agreement for a five-year period. This will enable the two agencies to reinforce their cooperation on themes of common interest: the study of chemical and microbiological contaminants of fishery products, and the overall health of fish and molluscs.

In view of the complementary nature of their missions and activities regarding epidemiological surveillance of fish and shellfish, and consumer safety, IFREMER and ANSES have decided to strengthen their cooperation in order to improve the coordination of research programmes and expert appraisal work and to share expertise and resources.

The signature of a framework partnership agreement will therefore enable IFREMER and ANSES to pool their expertise in areas of key importance to health:

  • marine biotoxins;
  • trace metal elements in fishery products;
  • aquatic bacteria, parasites and viruses of interest to public health;
  • microplastics;
  • fish and mollusc health.

This strengthened cooperation will primarily be reflected in joint studies and expert appraisals, the design and implementation of research projects, with the possibility of joint funding of thesis subjects, the exchange of best practices, joint work to define reference and surveillance methodologies, and the production and provision of data and biological materials.

In terms of expert appraisal, the scientific personnel of both agencies will be encouraged to participate in the expertise bodies and working groups they each set up in the framework of their activities.

IFREMER's main role is to conduct and promote basic and applied research, as well as expert assessment and technological and industrial development activities, with the aim of studying, evaluating and developing the oceans' resources and enabling their sustainable use; improving methods to monitor, forecast and build stewardship to protect the oceans and enhance the value of the marine and coastal environment; and fostering the socio-economic development of the maritime sector.

Through its Laboratory for Food Safety, ANSES studies the biological and chemical hazards that can affect the safety and quality of food, especially fishery products. The Ploufragan/Plouzané Laboratory specialises, among other things, in farmed fish health and antibiotic resistance in the production chain.