Federal Office for Agriculture and Food

Man on a ship Fishery Source: BLE


Due to their contribution to healthy diets, and as a traditional cultural asset, fishery products are an important part of human nutrition. In order to preserve fish as a food item for both the present and future generations, an ecologically, economically and socially oriented fisheries management is needed, in particular, in addition to extensive protected zones.

Fisheries Industry

In the fisheries sector, the BLE is competent for the implementation of the Common Market Organisation for Fisheries, for market observation and price reports, for supply and needs analyses as well as for matters related to external trade in the fisheries sector.

Catch Regulation

Further BLE tasks include managing national catch quota and fishing effort as well as issuing access authorisations for non-EU waters. Aside from allocating fishing opportunities, the BLE also supervises the use of allocated catch quota and allocated fishing effort. Further tasks include the implementation of technical innovations in connection with the supervision of fishery-related activities, such as the electronic logbook, the electronic sales note and the satellite monitoring system.

Vessel Management

On behalf of the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL) the BLE manages three fishery protection vessels and three fishery research vessels. The fishery protection vessels allow the fulfillment of tasks in connection with fisheries control, coast guard coordination and the Maritime Security Centre. The fishery research vessels are used by the Thünen- and the Max-Rubner-Institutes for the analyses of fishery resources and catch-related technical studies.

Fish Labelling and Marketing Standards

Pursuant to the Regulation on Fish Labelling of 15 August 2002 (Federal Law Gazette I p. 3363), the BLE is competent for the compilation, management and updating of a directory of commercial denominations of fish species.

Within the EU there are marketing standards in place for certain types of fishery products. The BLE supervises compliance with the respective rules and regulations.