United States and European Union to Resume Trade in Live, Bivalve Shellfish

February 04, 2022

Biden-Harris Administration Secures Additional EU Market Access for U.S. Shellfish Industry After 10 Years of Trade Disruption

On February 4, 2022, the United States and European Union (EU) concluded negotiations to allow for resumption of bilateral trade in bivalve molluscan shellfish.  For the first time since 2011, U.S. producers, beginning in the states of Massachusetts and Washington, are eligible to export live, raw and processed bivalve molluscan shellfish to the EU, including oysters, clams, mussels, and whole or roe-on scallops.  EU producers in Spain and the Netherlands are also now eligible to export live and raw bivalve molluscan shellfish to the United States.

“Today’s announcement represents a positive step in the trade relationship between the United States and EU,” said Ambassador Tai.  “The Biden-Harris Administration is committed to both addressing trade barriers and building new opportunities for U.S. producers, and we will continue to work to strengthen the U.S.-EU trade relationship.”

“This announcement demonstrates an exciting opportunity for U.S. seafood producers to deliver world-leading products to consumers in the EU and furthers the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s mission to provide U.S. stakeholders opportunities to better compete in the global marketplace,” said Secretary Vilsack.

“U.S. seafood producers, including many family-owned businesses, are internationally recognized for exporting safe, sustainable and wholesome seafood—a valuable commodity in the global market,” said U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina M. Raimondo.  “The resumption of U.S.- EU trade in key shellfish products like oysters, clams, mussels, and scallops highlights the competitiveness of our fishery resources.”

In 2020, the United States was one of the world’s largest seafood exporters, with global sales of seafood products valued at $4.5 billion. 2021 exports of U.S. seafood products to the EU exceeded $900 million.

More details on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) food safety equivalence determination, as well as the requirements for exporting to the EU, are available from the FDA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration at the following links: