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India's Shrimp Exports Hit by EU Rejections

by the Fish Site Editor
04 September 2009, at 1:00am

INDIA - The Indian marine products export sector is facing the threat of a substantial fall in export volume as the rate at which the European Union (EU) has been rejecting shrimp consignments has been alarmingly high this year.

To add to the crisis, the EU has also threatened to ban imports from India, according to Business Standard of India.

Along with the EU, Japan and the US have tightened the inspection of marine products, especially cultured shrimp, from India. As the EU is the largest importer of Indian marine products, a ban may hit the export sector hard.

During the period January-July, the EU rejected more than 50 shrimp consignments from India due to detection of an antibiotic residue, presence of bacteria, traces of heavy metals and unhygienic condition of the products. The total number of rejections in 2008 was around 30. Belgium accounted for the highest number of rejections (20) this year, followed by England, Germany and France.

The sharp increase in the number of rejections was a matter of concern, said leading Kochi-based exporters. This would affect the prospects of Indian marine exports to leading overseas markets since there was tough competition from south-east Asian countries, they added.

They said that in spite of various government agencies examining shrimp consignments, the sharp rise in rejections should be taken seriously. Because of the passive approach of these agencies that the number of rejected consignments had increased this year, they observed.

the Fish Site Editor