CIFT Helps Fish Export Units Modernize Their Testing Laboratories | Rajkot News

Rajkot: Gujarat’s small fish exporting units are finally seeing a silver lining in the dark times that engulfed the industry after China took an unfavorable stance by refusing to take Indian fish.
Hope now shines on the besieged state fishing industry which exported around 5,000 crore rupees per year in the pre-Covid era, after the Central Institute of Fisheries Technology (CIFT ) decided to help these units to carry out their microbiology tests on the catches in their own laboratories. . Modernization of the laboratory will not only improve export quality, but also reduce rejections from importing countries and the players in the sector will be able to export to European countries without any hesitation.
The state’s fish processing hub, the town of Veraval, has nearly 100 units where fish from all over the state is imported for processing and export. There are also a few units in Porbandar and southern Gujarat.
According to the export rules, these processing units require an internal laboratory for microbiology testing for the detection of microorganisms in the food product. An exporter is required to create batches and test the raw material as well as the processed fish.
The hygiene standards of the importing countries are very strict and according to the fish exporters, if they find the presence of microbes in the fish, the whole container may be rejected.
More rejections would tarnish the country’s image for export.
According to industry sources, exports from South India are considered better than Gujarat in many countries in terms of quality.
CIFT director Ravishankar CN on Saturday signed a memorandum of understanding with four Veraval-based units and one Porbandar-based unit in Veraval to modernize exporters’ facilities.
Ashish Kumar Jha, Scientist at CIFT Veraval, said: “This is the first phase and we will be signing MoUs with all units that require an upgrade. We will help them improve their standards, which can meet international requirements. We will give them a standard layout like chemicals required for testing, environmental control for temperature and humidity levels and other necessary equipment. Our scientists will personally visit their units and train the laboratory staff of these units. ”
It is also expensive for exporters to reject the container, say trade experts who estimate the costs at around $ 25,000 for each release.
Gujarat Seafood Exporters Association secretary Naresh Vanik said exporters only want their containers to Europe to pass entry tests.
“Upgrading our labs will provide us with that security. If we find any microbes in raw fish, we won’t process them any further or export them either. Thus, it will save our effort and cost. Improved quality will lead to more demand from other countries than China.
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