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Tra Fish Breeders Dilemma About WWFs Criteria

VIETNAM - Since the World Widlife Fund (WWF) removed tra fish from the Red List, Viet Nams tra breeders have been left to decide whether to apply the WWFs Aquatic Stewardship Council (ASC) standards or not.

Tra and seafood aquaculture are subject to safety regulations for breeding areas of the Directorate of Fisheries and already apply international standards such as SQF, Global Gap, GAP, and CoC, reports the Viet Nam News Agency.

Over the past years, tra products have been exported to 120 nations and territories in the world. This proves that even without applying ASC standards, Viet Nam’s tra fish meet the requirements of breeding area, food and hygiene safety and are welcomed by international consumers.

The WWF’s move of removing tra fish from the Red List and signing a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Viet Nam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP) has proved that WWF has an intention to apply the ASC criteria set by WFF.

WWF’s decision to place tra fish on the Red List had affected many consumes. Now, for Viet Nam’s tra breeders applying the criteria set by WWF is costly and requires a lot of time. While the price of tra fish in the international market is decreasing, breeders have to pay another unnecessary fee.

It is obvious that the decision whether to apply ASC standards is entirely left to Viet Nam’s tra breeders. However, if they don’t, they will face the uncertainty about the consequences in the case the organization continues to misuse its power by issuing warnings on products.

If they do, this will create a precedent for non-government organisations to set their own norms and then force breeders to apply them. As a result, seafood breeders in Viet Nam and in the world will continue to pay unreasonable fees.

According to aquatic experts, Viet Nam has been applying the Code of Conduct (COC) set by the Food Agriculture Organisation, which is recognized in all nations in the world. This is the necessary basic standards which should be applied in seafood breeding areas in which makes other standards redundant. Some experts believe that it is time that the Vietnamese government put forth regulations to define what limit NGOs should be allowed or not to do in the country to prevent adverse consequences.

the Fish Site Editor

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