Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science

Centre For Environment, Fisheries And Aquaculture Science

Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science

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The Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas) is an executive agency of the United Kingdom government Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs(Defra). It carries out a wide range of research, advisory, consultancy, monitoring and training activities for a large number of customers around the world.

Cefas employs approximately 570 staff based at two specialist laboratories within the UK. They also operate an ocean-going research vessel Cefas Endeavour.


The primary customer for Cefas is their parent organisation Defra. They also undertake work for international and UK government departments (central and local), the World Bank, the European Commission, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), commercial organisations, non-governmental and environmental organisations, regulators and enforcement agencies, local authorities and other public bodies.

There is an increasing focus on commercial research and consultancy as the level of funding available from Defra gradually reduces.


Known previously as the Directorate of Fisheries Research, the name and status was changed in 1997 to 'Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science' (Cefas). At this time it became an Executive Agency of what was then the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food and is now the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra).

Lowestoft laboratory

In 1902, the Marine Biological Association opened a sub-station...
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