Chinese seafood canneries blame FDA for US lockout

Published on
July 26, 2016

China’s emerging seafood canning industry is blaming a crackdown by the U.S.A.’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for a sharp slowdown in growth for shipments of tinned tuna to the U.S. from a key cannery hub.

China’s General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine (AQSIQ) office in Taizhou has announced that shipments grew by 6.7 percent to 3,886 tons in the first half of 2016, with a 2.8 percent rise in value to USD 66.7 million (EUR 60.9 million). However, that total doesn’t approach the numbers from the first half of 2015, when shipments grew 80 percent in volume.

The FDA has ‘seriously tightened’ inspections of Chinese imports, according to the AQSIQ statement. AQSIQ also claims that the return of three shipments of Chinese cans to Taizhou prompted local canneries to pull back from the U.S. market.

AQSIQ, which effectively acts as a quality body and watchdog advising export firms – has promised to “energetically train” companies on how to meet FDA approval but also promises “high-frequency inspections” of exporting canneries targeting the U.S. market.

Last year, the AQSIQ blamed a slump in the value of the Russian ruble as well as a strengthening of the value of the Chinese yuan for sluggish growth in seafood exports. But the yuan has since weakened against the dollar while the ruble has recovered to some extent.

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