By Gao Fu Mao, Contributing Editor reporting from Beijing, China
Published on Monday, January 09, 2017
The top fishery official in China’s key tilapia exporting region has warned of a serious drop in exports in coming years due to quality issues.
Qu Jiashu, director of the Oceans and Fisheries Bureau in Guangdong, province has warned that “foreign technical barriers” to Chinese tilapia exports would increase in a climate of weaker demand, even though exports have not been seriously dented in 2016, he said.
In remarks posted on his bureau’s website, Qu also said that larger players have been demanding more industry regulation from his office in order to shut down smaller producers who are over-using antibiotics and producing fish of “variable quality.” The continued use of malachite green as a fix for unsuitable pond facilities is proving difficult to combat given the sheer numbers of people involved, said Qu.
Qu’s office will have to step up supervision if exports are to be protected, he said. But he also noted that while Chinese tilapia meets local [Chinese] food safety standards, weaker demand in big Western markets is prompting regulators in these countries to increase their technical barriers [to imports].