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SouthFresh Attains 3-Star BAP Status with Certified Catfish Feed Mill

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Seafood News] - August 1, 2017

SouthFresh Aquaculture announced recently it is the first catfish feed mill in the world to be Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) certified.

With the addition of its feed mill in Demopolis, Ala., SouthFresh Catfish of Alabama is now a three-star BAP domestic catfish company, as its processing plant in Eutaw, Ala., and Elysian Farms in Demopolis are already BAP certified. SouthFresh is one of the few catfish companies in the USA that owns 100% of its feed mill and is now the world’s first USA catfish company to earn ...

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Just Shrimp Adds Healthy Alternatives to Attract Younger Diners

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Seafood News] - June 21, 2017

Just Shrimp is a new concept with just three units in Illinois.  But they are making a splash.   Their original location in Tinley Park recently added a few more non-fried items to their menu: Grilled shrimp skewers and fresh grilled salmon. 

Recently, Just Shrimp started smoking salmon in-house, and added two sandwiches their customers seem to enjoy. The smoked salmon fillet sandwich is servedcold, on a buttered and toasted soft bun  ...

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Congressional Seafood Names Matthew Berrie as Food Safety Director

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Seafood News] - May 17, 2017

Alexandria, Va. — Congressional Seafood Company has named Matthew Berrie as director of food safety at the company’s new state-of-the-art plant in Jessup, Md.

In his new role, Berrie will be responsible for ensuring strict compliance with Hazard Analysis & Critical Control Points (HACCP), Safe Quality Food (SQF) guidelines, and other safety and quality standards. Berrie oversees all of the company’s safety and quality control efforts, which include monthly audits of its warehouse and processing facility, including its ...

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Lakes Farm Raised Catfish Issues Recall Notice to USDA for Fish that Contain Antibiotics

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] March 28, 2017

Lakes Farm Raised Catfish Inc., a Dundee, Miss. establishment, issued a recall for approximately 1,695 pounds of domestic catfish products that may be adulterated with residues, specifically Malachite Green and Leucomalachite Green, according to an announcement from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS). 

The products were produced on March 14 through 17, 2017. The following products are subject to recall...

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Skyrocketing Pangasius (Basa) Prices in Vietnam May Mean an Increase in Chinese Tilapia Prices

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] by Amy Zhong - February 27, 2017

The EU reduced catfish imports from Vietnam in 2016 and the U.S. issued policies to also restrict their imports. As a result, China has become Vietnam’s most important buyer. Many insiders assumed that the basa (catfish) prices would decline after the Chinese New Year, but prices skyrocketed by around 20%.

The farm gate price of Vietnam’s basa catfish has increased by US$0.2 per kilo, said Leon, general manager for Shanghai Sintun Industrial. Sourcing basa has become difficult. The fish produces processed fillets that can reach 300-400g each.

Costs increase by about 15 yuan for a carton of basa fillets after Chinese customs clearance in Shanghai. The CIF Shanghai was US$1.9 for basa fillets with 10% ice this January which rose to around US$2.15 to US$2.2 earlier this month, after the holiday...

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USDA Declines to Institute Grade A Catfish Program; Elects to Continue USDC Grading
SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews]  January 30, 2017
The USDA published a federal register notice today that it will not go forward with a Grade A catfish inspection program. Instead it urges users to continue to use the USDC Grade A catfish inspection program run by the National Marine Fisheries Service.
The Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 (2008 Farm Bill) and the Agricultural Act of 2014 (2014 Farm Bill) directed the Secretary of Agriculture to establish within USDA a voluntary, fee-based grading program for catfish. Since passage of the 2008 and 2014 Farm Bills, and particularly since the publication of the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) final rule, "Mandatory Inspection of Fish of the Order Siluriformes and Products Derived From Such Fish," which defined catfish (80 FR 75589), AMS has engaged the U.S. catfish industry and other stakeholders to seek input on requirements for voluntary U.S. standards for grades of catfish. 
During the 60-day comment period, four responses were submitted...


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China's CAPMA Establishes Catfish Institute to Support Expansion, Including in Domestic Market

SEAFOODNEWS.COM  [Shuichan News] Translated by Amy Zhong

CAPMA, (China Aquatic Products Processing and Marketing Alliance) has established a China Catfish Institute.
The institute is part of the China Ministry of Agriculture.
Although Chinese catfish aquaculture has been growing significantly, there were some quality and food safety problems that did great damage to the market.
With the industry now worth 50 billion Yuan, the institute will strengthen supervision of catfish industry and communication between companies. It also works hard to put into use scientific research findings..

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USDA Adopts FDA Definition of Processing for Domestic Catfish Operators and Limits Inspections 

SEAFOODNEWS.COM by Michael Ramsingh - May 18, 2017

The USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) proposed to change the inspection coverage for domestic catfish producers from all hours of operation to once per production shift. The decision was based on the FSIS finding that catfish processing operations are more similar to meat and poultry processing-only operations and not meat slaughter operations.

According to the Federal Register notice when Congress shifted catfish inspection responsibilities from the FDA to the USDA, the intent was so the FSIS could inspect fish establishments consistent with how FSIS inspects meat and poultry processing establishments, which is at least once per production shift...

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With Surge in Pangasius Sales to China, Gov't Cracks Down on Smuggling, Will Require Traceability

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Fishfirst] Translated by Amy Zhong  March 31, 2017

Various problems haunt China’s rising basa fish market. And the government plans to take action against them. With the popularity of basa fish in China, smuggling has become an increasingly serious problem within the past few years. And the government is going to issue relevant policies and regulations against it.

For example, it has released a list of basa fish producers which meet relative standards. So the fish with quality problems will be banned from China’s market.

Meanwhile, it also intends to strengthen its traceability system...

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Harvest Select Expands Beyond Catfish to Other Gulf Seafood with Purchase of Steel City Seafood

SEAFOODNEWS.COM  [Seafoodnews]  March 14, 2017

Harvest Select has acquired a Birmingham, Alabama based seafood company, Steel City Seafood, which will allow them to broaden their product offerings.

Harvest Select said "Our anchor will always be U.S. farm-raised catfish, but the our Alabama presence will increase to include southern gulf seafood and other species which are a natural complement to our current line of products."

Through the use of current trucking and logistics

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Carrefour Halts Pangasius Sales on Sustainability Grounds, Other European Retailers Disagree

SEAFOODNEWS.COM  by John Sackton  January 31, 2017

Carrefour, the largest retailer in Europe, has announced in the press that it will no longer be selling pangasius from Vietnam in Belgium, France, and Italy. 
However other large retailers, including Metro, Lidl, and Delhaize declined to follow suit.
Most of the other retailers pointed to pangasius ASC and BAP certifications as a reason to have confidence in the product...

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Kim Gorton Testifies on Absurdity of USDA Catfish Regulations at House Hearing


SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews]  Dec 9, 2016

The Chairperson of NFI,  Kim Gorton, who is also CEO of Slade Gorton Co., testified on Capitol Hill this week as part of the ongoing effort to correct the problems caused by USDA regulation of catfish.  The hearing was before the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health.  Excerpts from her testimony are below:

Mr. Chairman, Ranking Member Green, and distinguished members of the Subcommittee, my name is Kim Gorton, and I am the President and Chief Executive Officer of Slade Gorton & Company, a seafood company based in Boston, Massachusetts. I also am the 2016 Chairperson of the National Fisheries Institute, the nation's largest trade association for the commercial seafood industry. I am pleased to have the opportunity to appear before the Subcommittee today.

Slade Gorton & Company is a third generation family business. Our mission is to bring wholesome, nutritious seafood from around the world to America's table in support of well-being and overall quality of life. Our company is one of America's largest distributors and manufacturers of fresh, frozen and premium value-added seafood products, and we provide over 200 million seafood meals to Americans every year. We develop and manage fresh and frozen seafood programs for some of our nation's largest retailers, distributors and chain restaurants. We are proud of our record of supplying healthful and safe seafood to American families in all 50 states for nearly 90 years.
Regarding catfish: our company buys nearly an equal amount of domestic and imported catfish....

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China Bigfoots Pangasius Market, Output, Prices Rise, China to be Vietnam's Top Buyer within a Year

SEAFOODNEWS.COM  [The Saigon Times Daily] by Ngoc Hung - Nov. 28, 2016

HCMC – China’s huge demand has driven up prices of unprocessed tra (Pangasius) fish in the Mekong Delta, putting domestic processors on edge.

The total acreage under Pangasius farming has reached 5,352 hectares this year, up 4% year-on-year, which has sent output soaring 9% to 996,000 tons, according to data of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.
Key farming areas in the Mekong Delta have reported a substantial increase in Pangasius fish production. For instance, Dong Thap Province has turned out 325,000 tons of tra fish, a 19% increase, Can Tho City 140,000 tons, up 24%, and Ben Tre Province 155,000 tons, up 11%.
However, prices of the fish have picked up to VND22,000-22,500 per kilo

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