Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Catfish Journal Correction

CORRECTING and REPLACING Urner Berry Calls for USDA Inspection of Catfish Catfish Farmers of America
JACKSON, Miss.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Please replace the release with the following corrected version due to multiple revisions.
The corrected release reads:
Urner Berry, the nation’s oldest commodity market news reporting service, offered validation for the U.S. catfish industry’s call for USDA inspections by way of an article published today in the Urner Barry’s FTD Trade Alert e-newsletter.
In the commentary, author Richard E. Gutting Jr. underscored concerns over the safety of imported seafood and states that increased inspections will help, and not hinder, U.S. seafood importers.
“Like eggs, salmonella is a persistent hazard for farmed seafood, and so is the illegal use of veterinary drugs,” Gutting stated. “Unlike eggs, most seafood is imported, so regulating American farmers alone won’t fix the problem.”
Gutting said the FDA’s current strategy of issuing Import Alerts to control contaminated seafood “is unfair – and it isn’t working. Import refusals of seafood persist, and the number of Import Alerts and shippers subject to mandatory testing is growing. Few importers can control farming operations thousands of miles away, and as the experts point out – you can’t test your way out of food-safety problems.”
Rather, Gutting supports a more direct approach to work with the exporting countries to help them improve the safety of their products.
“You can, however, improve safety through government-to-government equivalency agreements, backed up by audits of foreign regulators and by government inspections,” Gutting said. “This is the strategy pursued by other countries for seafood and by the U.S. Department of Agriculture for meat and poultry – and it’s the strategy that will go into effect this December for catfish.”
Under the proposed new USDA regulations, said Gutting, U.S. catfish farmers, consumers and seafood importers alike all stand to benefit from increased food safety inspections.
“The government-to-government system works because it places responsibility where it needs to be – on foreign regulators and producers – rather than on importers,” Gutting said.
The information obtained from the “Urner Barry’s FTD Trade Alert” e-newsletter is comprised of the opinions of Richard E. Gutting Jr., and not necessarily those of Urner Berry.

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