Vietnamese shrimp exporters may lose Japanese market

The Fish Site
by The Fish Site
5 December 2006, at 12:00am

VIETNAM Not only cuttle-fish dealers, but shrimp exporters are also facing the risk of losing the Japanese market if Japanese authorities decide to prohibit imports from Vietnam.

Cleaning the Shrimps

The Vietnamese Ministry of Trade has warned shrimp processors and management authorities that Japanese authorities were considering banning shrimp imports from Vietnam.

In recent days, Japanese authorities have many times discovered anti-biotic residues and impurities in consignments of products exported to the country, which is considered a violation of Japanese law on food hygiene.

On September 19, 2006, Japan decided that 50% of consignments destined for Japan must be examined for chloramphenicol before being imported into the country.

But even this declaration did not improve the situation. This led to the a subsequent decision by Japanese authorities to examine 100% of imports from Vietnam.

The Commercial Affairs Division under the Vietnam’s Embassy in Japan has had many working sessions with Japanese authorities to tackle the problem, explaining the drastic measures Vietnam was taking to improve the situation.

While waiting for the Japanese side to make a final decision, Vietnam has been requested to track down the reasons for the unsafe exports and apply necessary measures to prevent the exportation of substandard products.

The Ministry of Trade (MoT) said that the most important thing that needed to be done at this moment was to not export substandard products. This should be seen as the last opportunity for Vietnam to retain the right to export shrimp to Japan.

However, even after the instruction on 100% examination over Vietnam’s exports became effective, Japanese authorities have still found many other cases of violations.

On November 21, 2006, MoT received a notice from the Japanese Health Care and Labour Ministry which said that Japan was considering prohibiting shrimp imports from Vietnam.

Source: VietNamNet Bridge