The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has now released information regarding imports refused entry into the United States for the month of July. In total, the agency reported refusing 197 seafood entry lines last month. Of these, 18 (9.1%) were of shrimp entry lines refused for reasons related to banned antibiotics. For the year, the FDA reports refusing 79 total entry lines of shrimp for veterinary drug residues. Even if no further refusals are made by the agency for the remainder of this year, the total amount of entry lines refused already exceeds the annual total of nine of the last fifteen years.
While the principal driver of the record-setting refusal rates in 2014 and 2015 was shrimp shipped from Malaysia, this year the primary source of refusals has been India. Through July, shrimp shipped from India has comprised 75% of the shrimp entry lines refused for reasons related to banned antibiotics (59 of 79). The sheer number of entry line refusals of shrimp from India is unprecedented and is now nearly double the highest annual amount previously reported:
In July, the FDA reported refusing shrimp entry lines originating from three different countries (China, India, and Vietnam) for banned antibiotics. These entry line refusals involved three different companies in those countries:
- Jagadeesh Marine Exports (India), a company not currently listed on Import Alert 16-129 for nitrofurans, but listed on Import Alert 16-124 for chloramphenicol on November 16, 2015, had sixteen entry lines refused for shrimp contaminated with veterinary drug residues in the Los Angeles District;
- Yantai Fujiyasu Food Co. (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 New York District; and
- Minh Qui Seafood Co., Ltd. (Vietnam), a company not currently listed on Import Alert 16-129 for nitrofurans, but recently listed on Import Alert 16-124 for sulfamethoxazole on July 22, 2016, had one entry line refused for shrimp contaminated with veterinary drug residues in the New York District.
Consistent with prior months, the individual refusal data released by the FDA continue to indicate that issues with Indian shrimp this year are limited to just four exporters: Jagadeesh Marine Exports (29 entry lines refused in 2016); Five Star Marine Exports Pvt. Limited (20 entry lines refused in 2016); RDR Exports (8 entry lines refused in 2016); and Kay Kay Exports (2 entry lines refused in 2016).