India exported a total of 11,34,948 MT seafood valued at all time high US$ 5.78 billion (Rs. 37,870.90 crore) in 2016-17

New Delhi: Secretary, Department of Animal Husbandry, Dairying and Fisheries (DADF), Shri Devendra Chaudhry hold a meeting with representatives of Coastal States, National Fisheries Development Board (NFDB), Export Inspection Council (EIC), Marine Products Export Development Authority (MPEDA), Central Institute of Brackishwater Aquaculture (CIBA) and other stakeholders including Seafood Exporters Association of India (SEAI), All India Shrimp Hatcheries Association (AISHA), Society of Aquaculture Professionals (SAP), Prawn Farmers Federations, Compound Livestock Feed Manufacturers Association (CLFMA), Fisheries institutions etc. to discuss the issue related to the problem of use of antibiotics in Indian aquaculture particularly in shrimp farms and hatcheries in the wake of detection of antibiotics such as nitrofuran and chloramphenicol in shrimp exported from India after increased frequency of inspection by EU from 10% to 50% w.e.f. October, 2016.

India exported a total of 11,34,948 MT seafood valued at all time high US$ 5.78 billion (Rs. 37,870.90 crore) in 2016-17 as against 9,45,892 MT valued at US$ 4.69 billion in the previous year. Frozen shrimp maintained its position as the top contributor with 38.28 % share in quantity and 64.50 % of the total earnings in terms of US$ from seafood exports. An increase of 16.21% in terms of quantity and 20.33% in terms of US$ has been recorded over the previous year. The demand from the European Union of Indian marine products grew substantially during this period while USA and South East Asia continued to be the major importers. The overall export of shrimp alone was pegged at 4,34,484 MT worth US$ 3,726.36 million during 2016-17. USA was the largest import market for frozen shrimp (1,65,827 MT), followed by the EU (77,178 MT), South East Asia (1,05,763 MT), Japan (31,284 MT), Middle East (19,554MT), China (7818MT) and other countries (27,063 MT).

The concerns of stakeholders and possible causes of the problem were discussed in detail during the intense deliberations. It was decided that the issue is a complex one and has to be addressed by various regulatory agencies in the Central and State Governments. Accordingly, DADF shall under its mandate for disease monitoring and control under the relevant regulations, coordinate and monitor the issue. The Ministry of Health & Family Welfare through its regulatory bodies such as Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (DGSCO) and the Food Safety Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) will also be consulted for working out a workable regulatory mechanism within the available legal provisions so that effective enforcement is in place including penal action against violators.