According to a press release, CanadaGAP will begin phasing out certification for aquaponics operations in 2020, citing "potential chemical hazards (antibiotics, for example) associated with aquaponic production" and possible uptake of contaminants through leafy greens.
The government organization will stop GAP certifying businesses on April 1, 2020 and begin revoking certifications from businesses in 2020.
The organization says it uses a generic HACCP model establish food safety requirements. According to CanadaGAP, using that model means more research is needed before aquaponics can be GAP certified again.
GAP stands for "good agricultural practices," and means that growers are sticking to certain practices designed to ensure food safety for consumers. The definition of GAP varies from country to country.
The Aquaponics Association, an advocacy group based in Washington D.C., said in a statement that CanadaGAP's decision was "based on faulty and/or incomplete information," and says it is working with experts to provide the research to combat what it deems as false statements.
In the United States, the USDA established pilot program for GAP certification in aquaponics that runs through Dec. 31, 2019. At this time, it is unclear if the program will continue into 2020.