Seafood Safety is a Priority

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Seafood Safety is a Priority

Food safety is a priority for all farmed seafood

Eat more Farmed Fish – FSAI

Over 80% of Irish farmed salmon are produced organically thus ensuring top quality fresh and downstream products for Irish consumers.

Fish consumption in Ireland is low relative to many other countries and must be increased. Bord Bia, retailers, and others are currently actively involved in fish promotion and Irish farmed salmon will have a central role in increased consumption.

Irish farmed salmon are an excellent source of EPA and DHA which are of key importance for cardiovascular health, brain development and cognitive health. Salmon are also a good source of high quality protein and supply minerals and certain vitamins.

Eat and enjoy one to two portions of Irish farmed salmon per week as part of a balanced diet. Intersperse with other oily fish such as mackerel and with white fish as these are also highly nutritious.

IFA’s key role in Shellfish Safety

Shellfish safety is potentially impacted by two main factors: pollution and naturally occurring algae. both of these issues are out of the control of the farmers but can have serious impacts on the safety of shellfish for consumers if not monitored and controlled at all times.

IFA Aquaculture plays a key role in the national Molluscan Shellfish safety Committee (MSSC) which it helped to set up with all the agencies involved in shellfish food safety. This committee oversees the biotoxin monitoring regime and decides each year on the classification of shellfish growing areas.

The National Biotoxin Monitoring Programme Code of Practice can be found here

The National Shellfish Microbiological Code of Practice can be found here.

Residues

Irish farmed seafood had a stellar performance in 2015, with a 100% compliance mark in the report the national residue programme. This arge and independent report gives Irish salmon and trout a 100% compliance rating for the 9th year in a row. The testing confirms that our products contain zero residues for licensed medicines or unlicensed substances. 1,882 results were collated in 2014 from fish randomly sampled at juvenile and harvest stages. For a relatively small industry, that is very significant number of tests, but the outcomes were never in any doubt.

The National Residue Monitoring Programme covers all livestock and domestically produced products and is co-ordinated by the Department of Agriculture Marine and Food. The full report including all other species is produced every summer and published on the Department’s website.

Given the constant checks by farmers, customers and auditors as well as the close veterinary supervision, the internal quality controls and the basic pride in producing a top class product, this should not be news. When we have top of the range quality schemes set by organic certification bodies, supermarkets, processors and smokeries which all monitor Irish salmon and trout so they can meet the high demand for this premium seafood, this gives a huge confidence boost to all stakeholders and consumers.

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