Antibiotic residues in shrimp hit exports

Task force to come up with strategies

The Andhra Pradesh State-level task force committee headed by Fisheries Department Commissioner Ramasankar Naik on Friday expressed concern over rejection of shrimp exports by the European Union, citing indiscriminate use of antibiotics in shrimp cultivation in the State.

The task force committee inspected aqua ponds, laboratories and shops selling aqua products (feed) in Krishna district following a brainstorming session with aqua farmers and other stakeholders here. “The State’s annual shrimp exports are worth Rs. 17,000 crore. Unscientific and unhealthy practices in shrimp cultivation will have an adverse impact on aquaculture as well as the economy of the State,” said Mr. Naik.

The task force committee, which documented the problems of aqua farmers, told the latter and other stakeholders that antibiotic residues in shrimp would lead to health hazards for consumers in the importing countries and hence they had been rejecting the shrimp from Andhra Pradesh.

White spot diseases

In 2015, Vannemei species worth Rs. 600 crore was found infected with white spot and other diseases in Krishna district, according to the Fisheries Department reports. Mr. Ramasankar Naik appealed to the aqua farmers to stop the practice of using antibiotics and instead shift to a good pond and adopt other better aquaculture management practices.

Andhra Pradesh is one of the major exporters of shrimp to the European Union. Officials of the Marine Products Exports and Development Authority, the Food Safety and the Pollution Control Board have been working on the impact of usage of antibiotics in shrimp cultivation across the State, apart from creating awareness among the aqua farmers.


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