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Exporters threaten not to source shrimp from farms

INDIA - An effort of the governments trade promotion body Marine Products Export Development Authority (MPEDA) to clamp down on a practice of shipping out shrimp with antibiotic residues which threatens Indias global shrimp trade has resulted in exporters threatening to stop sourcing shrimp from aquaculture farms.

One of the exporters said it was aquaculture farmers, and not processors or exporters who were to blame for antibiotic residues in shrimp.

In a letter to six major exporters, whose shipments were either detained or rejected by authorities in the European Union because their shrimp had antibiotic residues, MPEDA said it would be constrained to withdraw the registration granted to their processing plants and scrap their export licences if more of their shipments were rejected for the same reason.

The notices were sent to six companies in Andhra Pradesh earlier this month by MPEDA. The companies are Devi Fisheries Ltd, Devi Seafoods Ltd, Wellcome Fisheries Ltd, Surya Mitra Eximps Pvt. Ltd, Satya Sea Foods Ltd and Jagadeesh Marine Exports.

According to MPEDA’s letter, the use of antibiotics doesn’t just result in a loss for exporters—it also damages “the very name and image of the country”.