Project 5.1 BIOQUAL

Physiology and genetics of seafood quality traits


25. Göteborg University (UGOT), Sweden; 20. University of St Andrews (USTAN); 1. National Institute of Aquatic Resources (DTU Aqua); 2. Norwegian Institute of Fisheries and Aquaculture (NIFA), Norway;  69. BioMar AS (BIOMAR), Denmark; 66. Johnson Seafarms Ltd (JSF), United Kingdom; 70. AGA Halibut AS (AGA), Norway.


These partners will provide a cutting-edge competence in the respective research areas of fish endocrinology, muscle physiology, fish nutrition and genetics. This will be integrated to put into operation a major European push for identifying the physiological and genetic basis of quality traits in aquacultured fish, thus establishing the fundaments for the knowledge-based production of tailor-made seafood with superior flesh quality traits. BIOQUAL includes also the active participation of both large partners (69.BIOMAR) and SMEs. Two SMEs will be affiliated as partners, i.e. 66.Johnson Seafarms Ltd., Scotland, and 70.AGA Halibut AS, Norway, providing farmed cod and halibut to aid the assessments of flesh quality traits. Bodø Regional University, Norway, will be a sub-contractor, carrying out some analytical measurements on wild and farmed fish.


During the first 18-months period, the core research activities will be initiated and integrated. Concomitantly, further SEAFOODplus partners will be integrated into the project, in particular within the areas of husbandry (project 5.2; ETHIQUAL). Fish exposed to feed modifications in BIOQUAL will be used to elucidate causal relationships between novel feed and endocrine and physiological quality traits, and these traits will also be correlated to further measures of product quality. Thus, a progressively increased level of SEAFOODplus research integration is envisaged during the project lifetime.  The proposed S&T approach is to apply state-of-the-art tools.


The objective of the project is: 

- To establish novel endocrinological, physiological and genetic tools in order to identify quality traits in finfish aquaculture, to apply these to fish fed novel diets, and lay foundations for the establishment of high-throughput protein-array technology for assessing muscle quality and for the production of gene microarrays to aid in broodstock selection based on quality traits.

The research within the project is described in seven major blocks of activities 


Read about this and the other projects in RTD Pillar 5 Seafood from aquaculture in the Eurofish magazine article


High quality seafood products reared under sustainable conditions

Major research achievements

The major research achievements are described in the following subpages for each project year:


2004            2005           2006          2007        2008 


Projectleader BIOQUAL

Prof. Björn Thrandur Björnsson, PhD

UGOT, Sweden