Latest News

Solid Senate Support for Combatting Illegal Shrimp Imports

May 11th, 2017
A bipartisan group of eleven powerful U.S. Senators has gone to bat in a big way for the domestic shrimp industry and U.S. shrimp consumers and against illegal shrimp imports by expressing their support for the full implementation of the new U.S. Seafood Import Monitoring Program. Their support was expressed in an April 27, 2017, letter to Department of Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross http://www.shrimpalliance.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/04.27.17-Senate-Letter-to-Sec-Ross-FINAL-Signed1.pdf.
The letter, spearheaded by Louisiana Senator Bill Cassidy, MD (R-LA), and signed by Senators Cornyn (R-TX), Cochran (R-MS), Shelby (R-AL), Wicker (R-MS), Blumenthal (D-CT), Cruz (R-TX), Markey (D-MA), Tillis (R-NC), Kennedy (R-LA) and Strange (R-AL), cites the litany of illegal and fraudulent activities that plague much of the more than $5 billion of shrimp imported into the U.S. each year. These include evading U.S. antidumping duties recently extended by the International Trade Commission (ITC) on shrimp imports from China, India, Thailand and Vietnam in order to protect the U.S. industry – also with strong Congressional support.
The letter further cites the illegal use of dangerous, FDA-banned antibiotics by foreign shrimp farms and the unconscionable efforts of some shrimp importers to evade FDA’s enforcement of that ban designed to protect the health of U.S. consumers. As the letter notes, if that’s not bad enough, shrimp imports are also sometimes the product of Illegal, Unregulated and Unreported (IUU) fisheries, as well as slave labor.
“Shrimp is by far the most valuable seafood import to the United States, and in turn, the scale and scope of fraudulent activities associated with shrimp imports transcends that of any other seafood import”, said John Williams, Executive Director of the Southern Shrimp Alliance which is on record in strong support of this program during and since its development.
The program would require importers of record to secure federal permits, and to report to the U.S. government and keep records on, subject to audit, essential data on any seafood shipment presented for entry into U.S. commerce. The purpose of this data is to both verify that the product was legal when it was first caught or raised on a farm, and to ensure that the legal integrity of that product was maintained throughout the supply chain of custody and not misrepresented at the U.S. border.
As it stated in its public comments when the program was first proposed, “SSA believes the proposed seafood import traceability program is among the most promising tools for combatting the rampant, widespread fraud associated with both wild and farm-raised shrimp imports as well as the incidences of IUU fishing in foreign shrimp fisheries which include human trafficking and labor abuses.”
As noted by the Senators in their letter, despite these extensive fraudulent activities, the application of the program to shrimp imports was delayed indefinitely in response to dubious concerns that the program may be subject to challenge under the rules of the World Trade Organization (WTO). The concern, raised by the previous Administration, is that U.S. shrimp farms are not required by regulation to retain or report to the U.S. government the same data on their shrimp production as is required of shrimp importers under this new program. And so, it was argued, any traceability obligations would be an unfair burden on imports.
“To put this into context”, said Mr. Williams, “shrimp imports represent over 90 percent of the annual supply of shrimp to the U.S. market, while U.S. shrimp farms supply a fraction of 1 percent. Given the damage illegal shrimp imports have done to our domestic shrimp industry over the years, and given the serious threat to the health of millions of U.S. shrimp consumers from long-term exposure to illegal antibiotics, holding this program up for shrimp imports was simply a very poor decision. It is not an unreasonable burden on trade to expect importers to be able to prove that their products are legal and are actually what they claim them to be.”
Mr. Williams added; “Apparently, the Senators agree and have urged the Secretary Ross to ‘lift the stay’ and implement the program for shrimp imports as quickly as possible. We would like to once again thank Senator Cassidy for his leadership and the many U.S. Senators who signed this letter for their extraordinary support for our industry. We expect their request for Secretary Ross to do the right thing to protect U.S. shrimpers and U.S. shrimp consumers will carry great weight with him as he has made clear his own commitment to advance the best interests of the U.S. when it comes to trade policies.”

Louisiana Spring Shrimp Season to Open May 8th

May 5th, 2017
News Release

 

For Immediate Release
May 4, 2017

 

Contact: Ashley Wethey

Public Information
LDWF

(504) 286-8733

awethey@wlf.la.gov

 

 

Today, the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission set the opening dates of the 2017 Louisiana spring shrimp season based on data provided by Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries biologists and public comments.

 

The opening dates for the 2017 Louisiana spring shrimp season are as follows:

  • The portion of state inside waters from the Mississippi/Louisiana state line to the eastern shore of South Pass of the Mississippi River to open at 6 a.m. on Monday, May 15
  • The portion of state inside waters from the eastern shore of South Pass of the Mississippi River to Freshwater Bayou to open at 6 a.m. on Monday, May 8
  • The portion of state inside waters from Freshwater Bayou to the Louisiana/Texas state line to open at 6 a.m. on Monday, May 15

LDWF biologists monitored hydrological parameters and conducted over 500 trawl samples throughout the state’s estuarine and nearshore waters over the last five weeks to develop management recommendations for spring inshore opening dates. The Department provided projections of the dates when a minimum of 50 percent of the inshore brown shrimp population sampled reach sizes of 100 count per pound or larger.

 

The Commission granted authority to the Secretary of the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries to delay these opening dates if biological and technical data indicate the need to do so, and; to close any portion of Louisiana’s inside waters to protect small juvenile white shrimp if biological and technical data indicate the need to do so, or enforcement problems develop. The Secretary is further granted the authority to open any area, or re-open any previously closed area, and to open and close special shrimp seasons in any portion of state waters.

 

For a map detailing these openings see above or click here.

 

For more information, contact Jeffrey Marx (337) 373-0032 or jmarx@wlf.la.gov.

 

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is charged with managing and protecting Louisiana’s abundant natural resources. For more information, visit us at www.wlf.la.gov. To receive email alerts, signup at http://www.wlf.la.gov/signup

FDA’s Refusals of Indian Shrimp for Antibiotics Spike in April

May 5th, 2017
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has now released information regarding entry line refusals for the entire month of April. In total, 19 of the 114 (16.7%) of the entry line refusals reported for this month have been of shrimp for reasons related to banned antibiotics.
The FDA’s 19 entry line refusals for the month of April were the most for any month this year. Indian shrimp exporters (twelve) and Vietnamese shrimp exporters (twelve) have accounted for the majority of shrimp entry line refusals in 2017. All twelve refusals of Indian shrimp entry lines for banned antibiotics took place last month.
untitled
The nineteen shrimp entry lines refused by the FDA for banned antibiotics in April were from China, India, Thailand, and Vietnam and were reported by six different FDA districts:
  • Kalyan Aqua & Marine Exports India (India)

    , a company that is not currently listed on Import Alert 16-124, Import Alert 16-127, or Import Alert 16-129, had
    ten entry lines refused for shrimp contaminated with veterinary drug residues in the New Orleans District;
  • Minh Phu Seafood Corporation (Vietnam), a company that was added to Import Alert 16-124 for sulfamethoxazole in its shrimp on February 22, 2017 after its affiliate Minh Qui Seafood Co., Ltd. had been added to that Import Alert for sulfamethoxazole in its shrimp on July 22, 2016, had four entry lines refused for shrimp contaminated with chloramphenicol in the Florida District;
  • Suryamitra Exim Pvt Ltd (India), a company that was added to Import Alert 16-129 for nitrofurans in its shrimp on March 15, 2017, had one entry line refused for shrimp contaminated with nitrofurans and veterinary drug residues in the New England District;
  • Bluepark Seafoods (India), a company that is not currently listed on Import Alert 16-124, Import Alert 16-127, or Import Alert 16-129, had one entry line refused for shrimp contaminated with veterinary drug residues in the New York District;
  • Narong Seafood Co., Ltd. (Thailand), a company that was added to Import Alert 16-129 for nitrofurans in its shrimp on June 13, 2016, had one entry line refused for shrimp contaminated with nitrofurans and veterinary drug residues in the San Francisco District;
  • Fuqing Dongwei Aquatic Products (China), a company that has not been exempted from Import Alert 16-131, had one entry line refused for shrimp contaminated with veterinary drug residues and an unsafe additive in the Los Angeles District;and
  • Donggang Tianquan Aquatic Food C (China), a company that has not been exempted from Import Alert 16-131, had one entry line refused for shrimp contaminated with veterinary drug residues in the Los Angeles District.

ITC Votes to Maintain Antidumping Duties on Shrimp from China, India, Thailand, and Vietnam; Trade Relief on Brazilian Shrimp Will End

May 2nd, 2017

Today, the Commissioners of the U.S. International Trade Commission voted unanimously (5 to 0) to maintain antidumping duties on unfairly-traded shrimp imports from China, India, Thailand and Vietnam for another five years.  The Commissioners also voted unanimously (5 to 0) to revoke the antidumping duty order on shrimp from Brazil.

Because of the Commission’s vote today, trade relief will continue on shrimp imports from China, India, Thailand, and Vietnam and will not be subject to another sunset review until the summer of 2022.

Once a final determination by the Commission is published in the Federal Register, imports of shrimp from Brazil will no longer be subject to antidumping duties.  Over the last decade (2007 through 2016), the United States had imported a total of US$622,172 worth of frozen, non-breaded warmwater shrimp from Brazil, an average of $62,217 a year.  In the absence of antidumping duties, shipments of Brazilian shrimp are likely to increase although the extent and significance of the likely increase is unknown.

The Commission’s decision to maintain antidumping duties on shrimp imports from China, India, Thailand, and Vietnam came in response to the large-scale participation of U.S. shrimp industry members in the agency’s sunset review.  An unprecedented number of shrimpers provided the Commission with information regarding their business operations between 2012 and the third quarter of 2016.  This data, along with the information supplied by U.S. shrimp processors, was used by the Commission to ascertain the likely impact of revoking trade relief on the U.S. shrimp industry.

In addition to the information supplied by industry members to the Commission, several industry members also traveled to Washington D.C. to give direct testimony to the U.S. International Trade Commission and answer questions posed by Commissioners at a hearing held by the Commission on March 16, 2017.

Further, the shrimp industry’s arguments have been strongly supported by both state and federal elected officials.  Three U.S. Congressmen – Walter Jones (R-NC), Steven Palazzo (R-MS), and Garret Graves (R-LA) – and the Lt. Governor of Louisiana, Billy Nungesser (R-LA), testified in person at the Commission’s hearing in support of the trade relief.  Letters of support for the antidumping duties were submitted by the Governor of the state of Mississippi, Phil Bryant, and, separately, the Executive Director of the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources, Jamie Miller, as well as by four U.S. Congressmen – Cedric Richmond (D-LA), Randy Weber (R-TX), Bradley Byrne (R-AL), and Clay Higgins (R-LA) – and by Senators Richard Shelby (R-AL), Luther Strange (R-AL), Senator Thad Cochran (R-MS), Senator Roger Wicker (R-MS), and Senator John Kennedy (R-LA).

“The Commission’s vote today shows what the shrimp industry can achieve when it works together towards the same goal,” said John Williams, the Executive Director of the Southern Shrimp Alliance.  “Over the last dozen years, the antidumping duty orders have played an essential role in providing our industry members with the ability to keep working.  We are grateful to all of the elected state and federal officials that stood with us during the sunset review and to everyone in the industry that sacrificed their time, energy, and resources to participate in the Commission’s process.”

Read the U.S. International Trade Commission’s News Release on the vote in the Sunset Reviews here:  https://usitc.gov/press_room/news_release/2017/er0502ll763.htm

 

 


Broad Support for Shrimp Antidumping Duties Voiced by Federal and State Elected Officials

April 26th, 2017

The U.S. International Trade Commission is currently considering whether to maintain antidumping duties on unfairly-traded shrimp imports from Brazil, China, India, Thailand and Vietnam for another five years.  If the Commission determines that dumped imports are likely to cause or continue material injury to the U.S. shrimp industry in the event of the removal of duties, the trade remedy will remain in effect.
In written arguments and testimony, the domestic shrimp industry contends that the return of unfairly-traded imports into the U.S. market would once again lead to a collapse in prices and, in result, even more fishermen leaving the commercial fishery.  A new flood of imports from the five countries would likely hollow out the remaining infrastructure of the industry and imperil the economies of small coastal communities from south Texas through North Carolina.
The shrimp industry’s arguments have been strongly supported by both state and federal elected officials.  At a hearing held by the Commission on March 16, 2017, three U.S. Congressmen – Walter Jones (R-NC), Steven Palazzo (R-MS), and Garret Graves (R-LA) – testified in person as to the importance of the shrimp industry to their districts and voiced their support for the trade remedy.  These Congressmen were joined at the hearing by the Lt. Governor of Louisiana, Billy Nungesser (R-LA).  Lt. Governor Nungesser described the importance of the commercial fishing industry to the state of Louisiana and appealed to the Commission to maintain the antidumping duties.
Demonstrations of support have also been made through written submissions for the formal record of the sunset review.  The Governor of the state of Mississippi, Phil Bryant, and, separately, the Executive Director of the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources, Jamie Miller, sent letters to the Commission asking that the antidumping duties be maintain.  Letters of support for the trade remedy have also been submitted by four additional U.S. Congressmen: Cedric Richmond (D-LA), Randy Weber (R-TX), Bradley Byrne (R-AL), and Clay Higgins (R-LA).  In addition, a joint letter emphasizing the importance of the shrimp industry to the state of Alabama and requesting that the antidumping duties be continued was sent to the Commission by Senators Richard Shelby (R-AL) and Luther Strange (R-AL).  Letters in support of the U.S. shrimp industry were also submitted by Senator Thad Cochran (R-MS), Senator Roger Wicker (R-MS), and Senator John Kennedy (R-LA).
“The support our industry has received by elected officials throughout the Gulf and South Atlantic coast has been extraordinary,” said John Williams, the Executive Director of the Southern Shrimp Alliance.  “On behalf of the entire membership of the Southern Shrimp Alliance, I want to express our deepest appreciation to everyone that has worked to ensure the future of the U.S. commercial shrimp fishery.”
The U.S. International Trade Commission has provisionally scheduled its final vote on whether to continue the antidumping duty orders for Tuesday, May 2, 2017.
Read the letters from Rep. Walter Jones, Steven Palazzo, and Garret Graves and Lt. Governor Nungesser requesting to appear at the Commission’s hearing here: http://www.shrimpalliance.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/Requests-to-Appear1.pdf
Read the letters of support submitted to the Commission by state and federal elected officials here: http://www.shrimpalliance.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/Support-Letters1.pdf

Dockside Prices for Small Shrimp Up In March, First Quarter Landings Above Historical Average

April 25th, 2017

NOAA’s reporting for landings of shrimp in the Gulf of Mexico for the month of March showed a slight decline in the volume of shrimp harvested this year (3.46 million pounds) compared to March of last year (3.51 million pounds).  However, the amount of shrimp landed by fishermen in the Gulf last month was 52.1 percent higher than the prior sixteen-year historical average for the month (2.28 million pounds).

 

Similarly, while total shrimp landings in the region for the first quarter of this year (10.16 million pounds) were slightly below those of the first quarter of last year (10.42 million pounds), they were 10.3 percent above the prior sixteen-year historical average for the Gulf (9.21 million pounds).

 

In total, shrimp landings in the first quarter of the year are a small portion of annual harvests.  Over the last fifteen years, shrimp landed in the first three months have comprised between five and eleven percent to the total amount of shrimp landed in the region.

 

Yet despite the relative lack of overall importance of first quarter landing figures, the data released by NOAA shows some interesting trends.

 

First, landings in 2017 have been spread more broadly amongst the states, with the exception of Mississippi.  Texas (2.99 million pounds) has accounted for 29.4 percent of all shrimp landed in the Gulf so far in 2017, while Louisiana (2.61 million pounds) has claimed 25.7 percent of landed shrimp this year, Alabama (2.31 million pounds) comprised 22.7 percent of all landed shrimp, and the west coast of Florida (1.91 million pounds) has been responsible for 18.8 percent of landings.

 

Second, ex-vessel prices for small count sizes increased significantly in March compared to March of 2016.  Ex-vessel prices for 41-50 count shrimp jumped from $1.74 per pound in March 2016 to $2.30 per pound last month in the Northern Gulf, from $1.71 per pound in March 2016 to $2.69 per pound in March 2017 on the west coast of Florida, and from $1.54 per pound in March 2016 to $3.11 per pound last month in the Western Gulf.

 

Please click the following link to view SSA’s compilation and summary of March 2001-2017 Shrimp Landings and Ex-Vessel Prices for March 2001-2017:

http://www.shrimpalliance.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/March-2017-Landings.pdf

Minh Phu Again Leads the FDA’s April Shrimp Refusals for Antibiotics

April 25th, 2017

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has now released information regarding entry line refusals for the month of April through last Monday, April 17th. In total, 7 of the 46 (15.2%) of the entry line refusals reported for this month have been of shrimp for reasons related to banned antibiotics.

untitled

The seven shrimp entry lines refused by the FDA for banned antibiotics in April were from China, India, and Vietnam and were reported by four different FDA districts:
• Minh Phu Seafood Corporation (Vietnam), a company that was added to Import Alert 16-124 for sulfamethoxazole in its shrimp on February 22, 2017 after its affiliate Minh Qui Seafood Co., Ltd. had been added to that Import Alert for sulfamethoxazole in its shrimp on July 22, 2016, had four entry lines refused for shrimp contaminated with chloramphenicol in the Florida District;
• Suryamitra Exim Pvt Ltd (India), a company that was added to Import Alert 16-129 for nitrofurans in its shrimp on March 15, 2017, had one entry line refused for shrimp contaminated with nitrofurans and veterinary drug residues in the New England District;
• Bluepark Seafoods (India), a company that is not currently listed on Import Alert 16-124, Import Alert 16-127, or Import Alert 16-129, had one entry line refused for shrimp contaminated with veterinary drug residues in the New York District; and
• Donggang Tianquan Aquatic Food C (China), a company that has not been exempted from Import Alert 16-131, had one entry line refused for shrimp contaminated with veterinary drug residues in the Los Angeles District.
This is the fourth straight month that the FDA has reported refusals of entry lines of shrimp from Minh Phu Seafood Corporation for reasons related to banned antibiotics.

Reduced Cost – AMSEA Commercial Fishing Vessel Drill Conductor Course

April 10th, 2017
Good Day,
  Drill Conductors Safety Course to be held at Bonita Bill’s Waterfront Cafe, 702 Fisherman’s Wharf, FL 33931Register online or call AMSEA at (907) 747-3287. The cost for the class is $FREE for commercial fishermen, thanks to support from the U.S. Coast Guard and NIOSH.  This course will fulfill the U.S. Coast Guard requirement; 46 CFR 28.270 – Instruction, Drills, and Safety Orientation for documented vessels operating beyond the boundary line (12nm on the Gulf of Mexico).
§ 28.270Instruction, drills, and safety orientation.
(a)Drills and instruction. The master or individual in charge of each vessel must ensure that drills are conducted and instruction is given to each individual on board at least once each month. Instruction may be provided in conjunction with drills or at other times and places provided it ensures that each individual is familiar with their duties and their responses to at least the following contingencies:
(1) Abandoning the vessel;
(2) Fighting a fire in different locations on board the vessel;
(3) Recovering an individual from the water;
(4) Minimizing the effects of unintentional flooding;
(5) Launching survival craft and recovering lifeboats and rescue boats;
(6) Donning immersion suits and other wearable personal flotation devices;
(7) Donning a fireman’s outfit and a self-contained breathing apparatus, if the vessel is so equipped;
(8) Making a voice radio distress call and using visual distress signals;
(9) Activating the general alarm; and
(10) Reporting inoperative alarm systems and fire detection systems.
(b)Participation in drills. Drills must be conducted on board the vessel as if there were an actual emergency and must include participation by all individuals on board, breaking out and using emergency equipment, testing of all alarm and detection systems, donning protective clothing, and donning immersion suits, if the vessel is so equipped.
(c)Training. No individual may conduct the drills or provide the instructions required by this section unless that individual has been trained in the proper procedures for conducting the activity.
  However, remember that in 2010 the Coast Guard was charged by Congress to implement a change that would require the CAPTAINS of all commercial fishing vessels federally documented and state registered that are operating beyond 3nm of the coast to be certified to meet this requirement.  Now this HAS NOT been put into regulations as of yet.  But this class may be a chance to become or have a long standing captain certified.  More information on this change and others that are pending from the “CG Auth. Act of 2010″ and “CG and Maritime Trans. Act of 2012″ can be found at www.fishsafe.info.
  If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me or your local Commercial Fishing Vessel Safety Examiner.

 

Regards,
Mr. Al Waterford, USCG (ret.)
Program Manager, Commercial Fishing Vessel Safety
Fishing and Passenger Vessel Examiner
United States Coast Guard
Sector St. Petersburg
Preventions Department
155 Columbia Dr.
Tampa, FL 33606
Tel #: (813) 228-2196, ext. #8136
Fax #: (813) 228-2399

New Science on Red Snapper Bycatch

April 6th, 2017

The Southern Shrimp Alliance (SSA) wishes to express its appreciation to the authors of a new scientific paper confirming that the shrimp trawl fishery in the Gulf of Mexico accounts for a negligible fraction of the total mortality of juvenile red snapper.

 

The authors are Dr. Benny Gallaway, Dr. Bill Gazey and Dr. John Cole. The paper was published in March in the prestigious North American Journal of Fisheries Management. It is entitled “An Updated Description of the Benefits and Consequences of Red Snapper Shrimp Trawl Bycatch Management Actions in the Gulf of Mexico“. http://www.shrimpalliance.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/An-Updated-Description-of-the-Benefits-and-Consequences-of-Red-Snapper-Shrimp-Trawl-Bycatch-Management-Actions-in-the-Gulf-of-Mexico.pdf

 

“This paper finally puts to rest what our industry has always suspected, that the science was wrong and so the shrimp trawl fishery was shouldering an excessive share of the conservation burden for rebuilding the red snapper stock”, said John Williams, SSA Executive Director.

 

In the paper the authors carefully trace the history of red snapper stock assessment science and management actions taken by the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council to regulate the shrimp and directed red snapper fisheries. As part of the effort to rebuild the red snapper stock, federal regulations require the shrimp trawl fishery to drastically reduce its fishing effort in vast areas of the north and central Gulf of Mexico known to be juvenile red snapper habitat.

 

However, the paper confirms that natural mortality of these young fish is much higher than previously thought, and that the shrimp trawl fishery only accounts for 4% of the total mortality of juvenile red snapper. These findings call into question whether the current shrimp trawl effort reductions remain justified.

 

“We are extremely proud of our fishery’s long and highly successful record of sustainable bycatch conservation unmatched by any shrimp trawl fishery in the world. While our fishery remains firmly committed to do its share to reduce the bycatch of all species including juvenile red snapper, it may be time for the Council to consider revisiting the management plan to reflect this scientific reality“, added Williams.

Minh Phu Leads the FDA’s March Shrimp Refusals for Antibiotics; Japanese and Canadian Government Reporting Also Indicate Issues

April 4th, 2017

This morning, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) released information regarding entry line refusals for the month of March.  In total, 7 of the 209 (3.3%) of the entry line refusals reported for last month were of shrimp for reasons related to banned antibiotics.

In addition, the FDA reported refusing another 7 entry lines of shrimp exported from China and Malaysia with a refusal code of “UNSAFE ADD,” indicating the detection of an unsafe food additive.  With respect to shrimp imports, the “UNSAFE ADD” refusal code is occasionally used in conjunction with the refusal codes related to banned antibiotics.  However, in each of the 7 refusals reported in the month of March, the “UNSAFE ADD” code was the only refusal code listed and it is unclear what unsafe food additive might have been detected sufficient to have the shrimp determined to be adulterated.

1

The seven shrimp entry lines refused by the FDA for banned antibiotics in March were from China, Hong Kong, and Vietnam and were reported by four different FDA districts:

  • Minh Phu Seafood Corporation (Vietnam), a company that was added to Import Alert 16-124 for sulfamethoxazole in its shrimp on February 22, 2017 after its affiliate Minh Qui Seafood Co., Ltd. had been added to that Import Alert for sulfamethoxazole in its shrimp on July 22, 2016, had three entry lines refused for shrimp contaminated with veterinary drug residues, chloramphenicol, and because it appeared “to contain a poisonous or deleterious substance which may render” the shrimp “injurious to health” in the Southwest District and one entry line refused for shrimp contaminated with veterinary drug residues in the Los Angeles District;
  • Minh Qui Seafood Co., Ltd. (Vietnam), a company that was added to Import Alert 16-124 for sulfamethoxazole in its shrimp on July 22, 2016 (later, its affiliate Minh Phu Seafood Corporation was also added to the same Import Alert for sulfamethoxazole in its shrimp on February 22, 2017), had one entry line refused for shrimp contaminated with veterinary drug residues in the New York District;
  • Lee Fung Marine Products Trading Co. (Hong Kong), a company that is not currently listed on Import Alert 16-124, Import Alert 16-127, or Import Alert 16-129, had one entry line refused for shrimp contaminated with veterinary drug residues and unsafe additives in the New York District; and
  • Dandong Shenghai Foodstuff Co Lt (China), a company that has not been exempted from Import Alert 16-131, had one entry line refused for breaded shrimp contaminated with veterinary drug residues and nitrofurans in the Atlanta District.

The seven shrimp entry lines refused by the FDA for “unsafe additives” in March were from China and Vietnam and were all reported by the Los Angeles District:

  • Minh Phu Seafood Corporation (Vietnam), the same company added to Import Alert 16-124 for sulfamethoxazole in its shrimp on February 22, 2017 (after its affiliate Minh Qui Seafood Co., Ltd. was added to the Import Alert on July 22, 2016) and that had three other entry lines of shrimp reported as refused for shrimp because of banned antibiotics as well as being “poisonous”, had one additional entry line refused for shrimp found to have an “UNSAFE ADD” in the Los Angeles District; and
  • Dalian Jinhui Marine Product Co., Ltd. (China), a company that has not been exempted from Import Alert 16-131, had six entry lines refused for shrimp found to have an “UNSAFE ADD” in the Los Angeles District.

As the Southern Shrimp Alliance explained in response to the FDA’s reporting of refusals in February, the Chinese and Hong Kong refusals may indicate that in response to the Import Alert on shrimp shipped to the United States from peninsular Malaysia, Chinese shrimp producers and exporters are exploring other ways to enter the U.S. market.  These shipments continue to raise concerns regarding the use of banned antibiotics in shrimp aquaculture in China, the world’s largest producer of farmed shrimp.

The FDA’s reporting of repeated refusals of shrimp from Minh Phu Seafood and Minh Qui Seafood is particularly troubling.

The United States and Japan have reported the detection of banned antibiotics in shipments of shrimp from the Minh Phu Seafood Group over the last several years.  The FDA has reported refusals of shrimp entry lines shipped by Minh Phu in each of the first three months of this year.  In December of last year, Japan reported violations of its Food Sanitation Law for two separate shipments of shrimp from Minh Phu Seafood Corp. because enrofloxacin was detected in the shipments.  In September and October of 2016, Japan reported that there were a total of three shipments of shrimp from Minh Phu Hau Giang Seafood Corp. found to have sulfadiazine.  And just a few weeks ago, on March 23, 2017, the Canadian government placed Minh Qui Seafood Pte. on its “Mandatory Inspection List” for the detection of tetracyclines in its shipments to Canada.

Nevertheless, Minh Phu appears to have maintained its certification under the Global Aquaculture Alliance’s Best Aquaculture Practices program.  This is remarkable.  Since July of 2016, the FDA has listed one of the Minh Phu companies, Minh Qui Seafood, on an Import Alert for the antibiotic sulfamethoxazole and the company has not yet been able to get itself removed from that list.  In fact, another Minh Phu company, Minh Phu Seafood was added in February of this year to the same Import Alert for the same reason.  Now, in addition to sulfamethoxazole, the FDA is reporting refusing shrimp exported by Minh Phu for the presence of chloramphenicol, for unsafe additives, and for appearing to contain a poisonous or deleterious substance.  Two other significant seafood importing markets – Japan and Canada – have also reported issues with shipments from Minh Phu companies.  Yet, despite the repeated problems that have been detected with Minh Phu, there appears to be minimal demand from large purchasers of shrimp in the U.S. market that the problem be addressed.



Media Contact Information:

Deborah Long
804.360.0074
Deborah@Cohesive
Communications.com

Twitter: @ShrimpAlliance

Subscribe to the SSA media distribution list