Production country — Europe
Production method — Onshore open circuit system
The farming of turbot is a fairly recent development. Unlike open net pen fish farming such as salmon, turbot are farmed in enclosed land-based flow through systems that have little or no direct environmental impact. However turbot are a carnivorous species which require a high percentage of fishmeal and fish-oil in their diet, which makes them a net user of fish protein rather than a net provider. The wild fish on which they rely cannot be assured to come from a sustainable supply.
Criterion Score: -3
The traceability and sustainability of the commercial fed for turbot in unknown. Turbot require fish in their diet and therefore responsible sourcing of feed is essential.
Criterion Score: 3
Turbot are farmed in land based flow through systems that address many of the issues of environmental concern. Discharge water is cleaned before returning to the sea. Disease outbreaks are possible but there is little data to ascertain the extent of this, however due to the small industry it is likely to be low impact.
Fish Health and Welfare
Criterion Score: 1
Humane slaughter takes place however there are no specific welfare standards, disease outbreaks are thought to be localised and low frequency.
Criterion Score: 3
Regional level planning and regulations pertaining to environmental impacts are either not applicable to land based flow through systems or are effective in controlling impacts. There is no independent certification for this species.
Onshore open circuit system
The farming of turbot is a fairly recent development. Unlike open net pen fish farming such as salmon, turbot are farmed in enclosed land-based flow through systems that have little or no direct environmental impact.
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.Dab
Halibut, Atlantic (Farmed)
Sole, Dover sole, Common sole
Turbot (Caught at sea)
Turbot belongs to a small family of left-eyed flatfish (both eyes on the left of the body), known collectively as the family Scophthalmidae. This family of fish is confined to the North Atlantic basin and includes megrim and brill. Turbot becomes sexually mature at an age of 3-5 years and in most parts of its range spawns in April to August, females each producing up to 10-15 million eggs. In the North Sea reaching a length of c. 30 cm (males) and 35 cm (females) in about 3 years. In the Baltic Sea growth is slower, and the males become sexually mature at a length of 15 cm, the females at 20 cm. For some reason males are generally more abundant than females. Turbot can attain a length of 1m and a weight of 25 kg. Females are larger than males at any given age. Maximum reported age 25 years.
ReferencesFAO 2005-2018. Cultured Aquatic Species Information Programme. Psetta maxima. Cultured Aquatic Species Information Programme . Text by Rodr-guez Villanueva, J. L. & Fernendez Souto, B. In: FAO Fisheries and Aquaculture Department [online]. Rome. Updated 4 May 2005. [Cited 12 September 2018].
COUNCIL DIRECTIVE 98/58/EC protection of animals kept for farming purposes.
COUNCIL DIRECTIVE 93/119/EC protection of animals at the time of slaughter.
Council Regulation (EC) No 1/2005 protection of animals during transport and European Convention for the Protection of Animals during International Transport.
FAO. Code of Conduct for Responsbile Fisheries. Article 9. Aquaculture Development. Available online at: http://www.fao.org/docrep/005/v9878e/v9878e00.htm#PRE
FAO National Aquaculture Legislation Overview. Spain. Available online at: http://www.fao.org/fishery/legalframework/nalo_spain/en#tcNB00A6