Officials plan regular checks at fish markets

The Fisheries department, with the Health Department, plans to ensure sale of quality fish in markets across the State by conducting regular checks at markets and nearby ice factories, Fisheries Minister D. Jayakumar said here on Sunday.

“Though ensuring hygienic fish supply to the public is a major responsibility of local bodies and penal powers of adulteration of any food item are vested with the Food Safety Department, the Fisheries department will coordinate with these agencies since we have an overarching responsibility in ensuring quality in this sector,” he said. This follows the seizure of two tonnes of poor quality fish containing formalin from a market in Madurai. There are 31 whole sale markets, 156 major wholesale-cum-retail markets (apart from supermarkets), 310 retail outlets (including private outlets), 17 reservoir-based fish markets under the control of various local bodies.

There are more than 35 types of fish sold in the State’s markets. Certain species come from Andhra Pradesh, Kerala, West Bengal and Karnataka and some varieties from Tamil Nadu are sold in other States. “Fish transported over long distances face the risk of being packed using preservatives. It applies to our fish also, which is transported to other States,” explained an official in the Fisheries Department.

The total fish production of Tamil Nadu was estimated at 6.75 lakh tonnes during 2018-19. The State exported 41.17 lakh tonnes of marine products and earned a foreign exchange of ₹5,420.30 crore during the period. A total of 4.79 lakh tonnes of fish is consumed fresh, 0.52 lakh tonnes in dried and salted form and 0.27 lakh tonnes used to produce byproducts.

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Printable version | Jul 2, 2020 1:21:12 PM |

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