Working together to enhance aquaculture literacy

Recognizing a need for cross-sectoral partnerships to enhance public understanding of aquaculture, NOAA Fisheries, the National Sea Grant Office, and NOAA Office of Education have worked together since 2017 to coordinate NOAA’s efforts supporting aquaculture literacy. To date, this collaboration has culminated in:

A person on a small boat motors away towards their oyster farm.
An oyster farmer heads back to their farm after dropping off fresh oysters at a tour boat on the Damariscotta River in Maine. (LaDon Swann, Mississippi-Alabama Sea Grant Consortium)

What is aquaculture literacy?

Aquaculture literacy refers to an individual or a community’s familiarity with information about aquaculture — the breeding, rearing, and harvesting of animals and plants in all types of water environments — and related environmental, economic, and social topics. Aquaculture literacy relies on the collective impact of:

  • education;
  • outreach;
  • communications; and
  • collaborations between farmers, researchers, regulators, and the education community.

An aquaculture literate person can communicate about contemporary aquaculture in a meaningful way, and make informed and responsible decisions regarding aquaculture and its products.

For general questions about the aquaculture literacy initiative, contact the NOAA Aquaculture Literacy Coordinator: Brianna Shaughnessy, NOAA Fisheries Office of Communications (, 202-681-0319).