Market Advisory Council

The Market Advisory Council is a stakeholder-led organisation created in 2016 under the legal form of a non-profit organisation based in Brussels and co-funded by the European Commission.

The MAC is made up of European and national organisations from EU Member States representing the whole value chain. Members include organisations from the catching and aquaculture sector, processors, trade unions and environmental organisations, among others.

The MAC may provide its advice to the European Commission, the European Parliament, the Committee of the Regions, the European Economic and Social Committee, one or several European Union Member States and any other relevant stakeholder whenever it is relevant for the EU market of fishery and aquaculture products and within the tasks defined in Article 44 of Regulation (EU) No 1380/2013.

General Assembly

The General Assembly is composed of all the Members of the MAC, and shall meet at least once a year.

Current Composition:

59 members from 12 Member States:

  • Representatives of Value Supply Chain: 51
  • Other Interests Group: 8


Chair: Guus Pastoor

Vice-Chairs: Sean O’Donoghue & Christine Absil

Among others, the General Assembly shall:

  • approve the annual report, including the financial statements, the annual strategic plan and the budget for the next year;
  • establish fees to be paid by members as proposed by the Executive Committee;
  • elect the chair of the MAC and the members of the Executive Committee;
  • approve sale or disposal of assets of the MAC approve changes of Statutes and amendments Rules of Procedure;
  • approve dissolution of the MAC;
  • at proposal of the Executive Committee launch the procedure for loss of membership as defined in Article 14 of the Statutes of the MAC.

Executive Committee

The Executive Committee is composed of up to 25 members, appointed for a period of 3 years, and meets at least twice a year.


25 seats, 22 members

Members of the Executive Committee 2020-2023

Chair: Guus Pastoor

  • 60% Representatives of Value Supply Chain
  • Environmental or development NGOs and consumers

The Executive Committee shall, among others:

  • exercise the powers of the MAC
  • decide upon general policy
  • direct its affairs
  • be responsible for the preparation and forwarding of advice on markets to the appropriate bodies
  • prepare the annual report, the budget for the next year, the work programme for the next year
  • consider the auditors’ report

Working Groups

Working Group 1 EU Production

Chair: Sean O’Donoghue

  • Common Markets Organisation and the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (2014-2020).
  • Evaluation of first sale trends.
  • Impact of recovery plans on markets.
  • No-commercialization of undersized fish/juveniles in the context of new technical measures regulation and discard ban implementation.
  • Promotion and competitiveness of products.

Working Group 2 EU Markets

Chair: Andrew Kuyk

  • Supply (annual status and trends).
  • Trade with third countries: Community Custom Code, General System of Preferences (GSP), Free Trade Agreements, Economic Partnership Agreements, World Trade Organisation.
  • Monitoring of community imports and tariff situation, regulation of suspension and tariff quotas for fishery and aquaculture products.
  • Promoting social and environmental aspects of the international trade in fishery and aquaculture products.
  • Analysis of consumption trends.
  • Price developments ‘from sea to table’ (from the fisherman to the consumer) – Studying market efficiency and diversity in the Member States, inter alia, using data from EUMOFA.
  • Effects of the IUU regulation on the market.

Working Group 3: EU control and sanitary issues, consumer rules

Chair: Benoît Thomassen

  • Labelling issues
  • Voluntary information on fish products
  • Hygiene Regulation implementation
  • Relevant contaminants legislation; additives and residues issues
  • Traceability of seafood products
  • Food fraud
  • Implementation of IUU Regulation-issues other than tackled by WG2
  • Possible revision and implementation of the Control Regulation when related to trade and markets