Saudi Arabia imposes temporary ban on Indian shrimp after white spot discovery

Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

Saudi Arabia has imposed a temporary ban on shrimp imported from India.

The suspension resulted from the detection of the presence of white spot syndrome virus (WSSV) in frozen shrimp products imported from India, according to the Saudi Food and Drug Authority (SFDA), following testing of seafood products by the Saudi Ministry of Environment, Water, and Agriculture.

WSSV is a contagious, lethal virus affecting penaeid shrimp. It is not a threat to food safety or human health.

The SFDA said the ban will remain in place until India is able to “provide sufficient guarantees to ensure the safety of those products exported to the Kingdom so that the WSSV does not transmit to the fisheries in Saudi Arabia,” according to the Saudi Gazette.

Saudi Arabia is the 17th-largest seafood market in the world, with imports valued at USD 684.7 million (EUR 594 million) in 2020, good for a 1.24 percent global market share. Its seafood imports grew at a 2.23 percent compound annual growth rate between 2016 and 2020. Its top suppliers are Thailand, the United Arab Emirates, Indonesia, Yemen, and Norway, according to a Canadian government report.

Shrimp is the fastest-growing segment of Saudi Arabia’s seafood market, with a 2 percent projected growth rate through 2028, according to Mordor Intelligence.

Photo courtesy of Osama Ahmed Mansour/Shutterstock


Want seafood news sent to your inbox?

You may unsubscribe from our mailing list at any time. Diversified Communications | 121 Free Street, Portland, ME 04101 | +1 207-842-5500