Regulatory Cost Analysis

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For papers that are not available as Open Access, please contact the NAA Office at to request copies.

Competitiveness of U.S. Aquaculture within the Current U.S. Regulatory Framework

Increased attention has been paid in recent years to both positive and negative effects of increasing numbers of regulations on businesses in the United States. The decline in U.S. aquaculture has been attributed in part to increasing volumes of imports and high feed prices. However, there is increasing concern that the U.S. regulatory environment, as compared to that of international competitors, may also have contributed to this decline. More than 1,300 laws apply to U.S. aquaculture and even though the majority has been issued by individual states and apply only to specific types of aquaculture businesses in that state, the cumulative regulatory burden has increased over time.

The Costs of Regulations on US Baitfish and Sportfish Producers

Open Access –

The US regulatory environment has been characterized as complex due to the greater than 1300 laws promulgated at local, state, and federal levels. Recent declines in the growth rate of US aquaculture have been attributed, in part, to a complex, overlapping, and inefficient regulatory framework. This study is the first to examine this question by quantifying the farm‐level regulatory burden and its economic effects in an aquaculture industry sector. A survey was conducted of baitfish and sportfish producers in the 13 major production states in the USA to identify the direct and indirect costs of regulation on producers.

Effects of Regulations on Technical Efficiency of U.S. Baitfish and Sportfish Producers

The stringency of the regulatory environment has been shown to negatively affect the growth of aquaculture. A technical efficiency analysis of baitfish/sportfish production in the United States was performed using a stochastic production frontier model and a jointly estimated maximum-likelihood procedure.

Is There an Economic Incentive for Farmer Participation in a Uniform Health Standard for Aquaculture Farms? An Empirical Case Study

The growth of aquaculture, both in terms of the volume of production and the diversity of species and production systems, has created challenges for effective animal health policies. This paper presents results of a case study of the costs to a sector of U.S. aquaculture in which producers raising fish that are sold and shipped live contend with widely differing requirements for testing and certification of aquatic animal health. These are compared to related costs under a proposed uniform standard.

Regulatory Costs on US Salmonid Farmers

Open Access –

The economic effects of the implementation of regulations on aquaculture farms in the United States, while of concern, are not well understood. A national survey was conducted of salmonid (trout and salmon) farms in 17 states of the United States to measure on‐farm regulatory costs and to identify which regulations were the most costly to this industry segment.

Regulatory Costs on Pacific Coast Shellfish Farms

Open Access –

A survey was conducted of the Pacific coast shellfish industry (Washington, Oregon, and California) to assess the on-farm economic effects of regulations. The total annual regulatory burden for the Pacific coast, excluding non-cash opportunity costs, was estimated at $15.6 million (increased farm costs due to regulation), with an additional $110 million in annual lost sales revenue (markets lost due to regulatory action or trade barriers) and $169.9 million in additional lost opportunities (due to regulatory barriers to expansion or diversification); average annual costs were estimated to be $240,621 per farm and $68,936 per hectare.

Farm-Level Cost Drivers of Salmonid Fish Health Inspections

The drivers of farm-level costs of fish health inspections were identified in this study from national survey data on U.S. salmonid farms. The greatest costs identified were related primarily to state fish health requirements for inspection and testing to certify that fish are free of specific pathogens prior to approval of necessary permits to sell and/or transport animals. Study results suggest that implementing Comprehensive Aquaculture Health Program Standards might allow for risk- and pathogen-based reductions in the total number of inspections and fish sampled while maintaining equivalent or greater health status compared to current methods.

A Regulatory Cost Assessment of Ornamental Aquaculture Farms in Florida

The various production techniques, species, and destination markets make ornamental aquaculture an interesting study in how regulations impact the industry. In Florida, aquaculture is primarily regulated under the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, unique from other states. Regulatory costs and the value of lost production on ornamental farms in Florida were estimated to be $5.2 and $23.2 million, respectively. Although the values of lost production were high for ornamental producers, direct regulatory costs were low compared with other aquaculture commodities demonstrating that the industry in Florida may prove a regulatory model for other sectors.