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Monday, July 15, 2024

U.S. scrutinizes safety of Vietnam’s tra fish exports

The Saigon Times

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HCMC – The U.S. Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) recently conducted a thorough review of the food hygiene and safety management system pertaining to Vietnamese tra fish exports to the United States.

The comprehensive review, which took place from August 7 to 22, focused on six key components to determine the system’s equivalence.

These components encompassed the supervision of competent authorities, food safety regulations, consumer protection measures, hygiene oversight, Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point System (HACCP) testing, chemical residue control programs, laboratory testing, and microbial analysis programs.

In addition to these assessments, the inspection team visited 10 processing and export facilities among the 26 enterprises engaged in catfish exports to the U.S. They also inspected five tra fish farming facilities that supply raw materials to processing facilities in the Mekong Delta provinces of Can Tho, Soc Trang, Tien Giang and Dong Thap.

Three agencies under the National Agro-Forestry-Fisheries Quality Assurance Department (NAFIQAD) and the Biological and Chemical Testing Departments of the NAFIQAD – Branch 6 underwent inspection.

The initial findings of the inspection have garnered favorable responses from U.S. authorities, with only minor technical discrepancies detected at some farms and businesses.

Amid the subdued conditions prevailing in the export market, the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP) anticipates a 15% year-on-year decline in tra fish export revenue. However, experts are issuing cautionary predictions, hinting at a potentially more somber future for the tra fish export sector. Forecasts point to a 20-25% drop compared to the same period last year.

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