Influx of Indian Shrimp in the U.S. Market Causes Health Concerns

India is the leading source of shrimp found by FDA to be contaminated with either salmonella or banned antibiotics
In August 2013, the U.S. Department of Commerce issued a final determination finding that the Indian government provided significant countervailable subsidies to Indian shrimp producers and exporters.[1]

Unfortunately, the U.S. government has taken no action to countervail those subsidies since Commerce announced that finding.

In the intervening five years, support from the Indian government to its shrimp industry has only increased as part of that government’s initiative to rapidly expand shrimp aquaculture. Those efforts have been incredibly successful, leading to Indian shrimp flooding the world market. In 2010, the United States imported just under $300 million worth of non-breaded frozen warmwater shrimp from India. Last year, that amount had grown seven-fold, with the United States importing $2.2 billion worth of these Indian shrimp. That explosion has led India to become the most significant supplier of imported shrimp into the U.S. market. Last year, India accounted for 35 percent of the volume of all U.S. imports of non-breaded frozen warmwater shrimp, up from 6 percent in 2010.

Why is this such a pressing issue? The influx of Indian shrimp in the U.S. market causes several health and safety concerns. Within the past few years alone, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has reported an absurdly high number of refusals of shrimp imports from India containing traces of salmonella, in comparison to shrimp imports from other countries. From 2016 through August 2018, India accounted for 33 percent of the volume of all non-breaded frozen warmwater shrimp imports into the United States. Yet, at the same time, as shown in the table below between 2016 and October 2018, India has accounted for 49 percent of the entry lines of shrimp refused by the FDA for the presence of salmonella.

Source and further reading: Shrimpalliance

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