Bream, Gilthead (Farmed)

Sparus auratus

Method of production — Farmed
Production country — Europe
Production method — Open net pen
Certification — Organic certification
Picture of Bream, Gilthead (Farmed)

Sustainability rating two info

Sustainability overview

European Organic Standards for farmed gilthead bream set standards for cultivation which includes third party auditing and inspection. These standards lead to better overall environmental performance as a number of negative environmental impacts are addressed.

Feed Resources

Criterion Score: 0

Gilthead bream are a fed species and require a commercial feed. As they are produced to organic standards the feed used is traceable and organic for all non-marine ingredients. The fishmeal and fish oil is not responsibly or sustainably sourced and gilthead bream require more fish in their diet than they produce, which makes them net consumers of protein.


Environmental Impacts

Criterion Score: 0

Many of the environmental impacts of production are addressed via the application of the organic production standards. Issues such freshwater use, habitat impacts, chemical and organic discharges and disease are all included within the standard criteria. The issues of escape risk/frequency and predator control require improvement in terms of data collection and publication.


Fish Health and Welfare

Criterion Score: 2

Production standards include criteria for welfare and humane slaughter.



Criterion Score: 3

Overall the management of sea bass production is evaluated to be only partially effective. There is a lack of Spatial Management that adequately incorporates aquaculture production and although there are regulations and/or criteria in place for the environmental impacts of production there is insufficient data to assess the overall effectiveness in areas environmental planning and impacts.


Production method

Open net pen

Farming in open net pens allows for interaction with the surrounding environment and, as such, has to be managed in such a way as to minimise negative environmental and ecological impacts.


Based on method of production, fish type, and consumer rating: only fish rated 2 and below are included as an alternative in the list below. Click on a name to show the sustainable options available.

Basa, Tra, Catfish or Vietnamese River Cobbler
Bass, seabass (Farmed)
Bream, Gilthead (Farmed)
Cod, Atlantic Cod
Coley, Saithe
Hake, Cape
Hake, European
Monkfish, Anglerfish
Pollock, Alaska, Walleye
Sturgeon (Farmed)


Gilthead bream can grow to lengths of 70 cm and live for as long as 11 years. It is a sedentary species found in depths of up to 150m. Spawning occurs between November and December.


FAO 2005-2018.Cultured Aquatic Species Information Programme. Sparus aurata. Cultured Aquatic Species Information Programme. Text by Colloca, F.; Cerasi, S. In: FAO Fisheries and Aquaculture Department [online]. Rome. Updated 8 February 2005

EU Council Regulation (EC) No 834/2007 on Organic Production

Health status of wild and cultured Seabream in the northern Adriatic Sea: Vet. Med. - Czech, 47, 2002 (8): 222-226

The Impact of a Fish Farm on a Bottlenose Dolphin Population in the Mediterreanean Sea: Halassas., 2005, 21 (2): 65-70 An International Journal of Marine Sciences. Avaialble online at: Accessed 05/06/2018

Health status of wild and cultured Seabream in the northern Adriatic Sea: Vet. Med. - Czech, 47, 2002 (8): 222-226