norms to put India's marine export industry in peril
30 August 2003
The stringent norms notified by the Food and Drug Administration
(FDA) in the United States for testing anti-biotic residue
presence in seafood imports poses a severe threat to
the Rs 6,790-crore marine products export industry in
to sources in the Seafood Exporters' Association (SEA)
in Kochi, the tough stand taken by the US on sanitary
and phytosanitary norms, close on the heels of similar
norms notified recently by the European Union, tends
to be a non-tariff barrier to curb Indian seafood exports
to the US.
Marine Products Export Development Authority (MPEDA)
is of the view that the US norms are on par with the
EU norms. The US accounts for 25 per cent of the total
seafood exports from India.
comes second, accounting for 21 per cent of the seafood
exports from India, followed by the EU, accounting for
20 per cent. Only last year did the US overtake Japan
in regard to seafood imports from India. Shrimp is the
major seafood imported by the US from India. In value
terms, shrimp accounts for more than 60 per cent of
the seafood imports from India.
the new FDA norms, samples will be tested for a limit
of 0.3 particles per billion (ppb), which is the level
fixed by the EU.
is reported to have directed its field offices to test
about 12 samples a week. The mandate is to sample the
product flow so that the ratio of domestic to imported
product will mirror market demand and supply.
new norm is besides the already existing compliance
programme for therapeutic drugs in seafood. Nitrofuran
testing is not included in the new chloramphenicol assignment.
But it is likely to be included in the larger compliance
programme that will be issued later this year, the sources
EU had suspended licenses of five exporters about a
year ago following detection of chloramphenicol in the
consignments. However, this was later withdrawn.
of reports on food industry