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Call for action plan on seafood safety, quality PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 14 January 2008

Staff Correspondent

Experts at a discussion on Saturday called on all concerned to improve the safety standards and quality of export-oriented seafood to make the products more competitive in the global market and win the confidence of trading partners.

They stressed the need for a national action plan in this regard to ensure the safety and quality through a comprehensive approach asking the government to review the relevant laws and rules.

The views were expressed at a seminar on the national action plan for farm-to-fork strategy for seafood safety and quality in Bangladesh organised by the Department of Fisheries project on the strengthening of fish inspection and quality control services in Bangladesh in the CIRDAP auditorium.

The fisheries and livestock secretary, Syed Ataur Rahman, addressing the seminar, said the government had many limitations. 'We have improved our safety mechanism, but they are still not adequate.' He said Bangladesh was trying to comply with all international standards.

'Unless we take a holistic approach, we will be in great trouble,' he said, referring to the seafood industries and related export earnings.

Bangladesh earns about $550 million from frozen fish sector, mainly through export to Europe and United States. The countries are asking Bangladesh to comply with international standards.

The discussants said food safety was a market priority for the industries.

'A continuous record of high standards of food safety and product quality is a major factor in retaining and expanding seafood markets,' said TS Shetty, a United Nations consultant on fisheries, who read out the keynote paper.

He pointed to insufficient allocation of resources, poor response to problems, lack of right approach for compliance, poor institutional capacity and delay in amendment to the Fish and Fish Products (Inspection and Quality Control) Ordinance and its implementation as major causes of concern towards compliance with global seafood safety requirements.

Responding to the analysis, the fisheries secretary said the government efforts to amend the legislation were on. 'The government has prepared a law to this effect, and we hope it will soon be promulgated.'

Presided over by the fisheries department director general, Md Mokammel Hossain, the seminar was also addressed by Imtiza Ahmed, national project director SFIQCB, Md Mohiuddin, principal scientific officer of the fisheries department, Md Rafiqul Islam, director inland fisheries, Parikhith Datta Chowdhury, joint secretary of the fisheries and livestock ministry, Mahmudul Karim, executive director of the Bangladesh Shrimp and Fish Foundation, and Abul Hossain, an aquaculture specialist.

Comments Add New
md. mokammel hossain  - sector coodinator prawn |2008-11-20 13:38:26
At present I am working here as a sector coordinator prrawn of Winrock International, Bangladesh Agriculture Program.
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