The opening of a hi-tech testing lab for seafood and spices here at Kancharapalem by German testing and certification giant TUV SUD will boost exports from Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, Chhattisgarh, and parts of West Bengal.
For export to the United States and the European Union, stringent quality check and certification by an accredited agency of international repute is a pre-requisite. For want of it, exporters from the city used to send their consignments to Kolkata, Hyderabad or Chennai for certification.
Marine Product Export Development Authority (MPEDA), in its report for 2014-15, has said that Visakhapatnam retained its status as the premier seafood exporting port. Exports from the Visakhapatnam Port stand at Rs.7,578 crore in the first half of this year.
MPEDA figures indicate that the country has earned an all-time high turnover of Rs.33,441 crore in 2014-15 through seafood exports.
Spice exports from India touched Rs.3,976 crore as per Spice Board figures released in September 2015.
TUV SUD has declared that it will partner with food exporters by working with them right from the procurement to shipment stage.
They will carry out tests for international and national standards, including China, Japan, the Middle East, Saudi Arabia, the U.S. FDA and the EU standards.
“We work in consultation with Export Inspection Agency. The opening of the lab will help address issues of managing safety, quality and logistics throughout the supply chain. The quality assurance services at the testing lab will act as a quality gate between producers, manufacturers and buyers,” Dr. Pankaj Jaiminy, Assistant Vice-President (Food, Health & Cosmetics) of TUV SUD South Asia, told The Hindu .
Most of the consignments from the city and other major seafood landing centres have been rejected by the EU on several occasions for containing antibiotic residues or microbiological contamination. The detection of such contamination at early stage will rule out recall of stocks, loss of brand image and, most importantly, cost involved in exports.
The TUV SUD facility established in the city will act as a quality gate between producers, manufacturers and buyers