MANILA, Philippines — The Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (DA-BFAR) of the Department of…
The BFAR launches a campaign against the illegal sale of imported fish.
In light of the limited fishing season, the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) issued a warning to traders not to sell illegally imported fish in wet markets.
When its officers and staff visited the Commonwealth market in Quezon City on Thursday, they found that imported seafood like salmon, pampano, and squids are being sold there. This led BFAR to issue the warning.
The BFA’s in-charge officer Demosthenes Escoto explained that the inspection was a component of the organization’s informational effort to protect local fishermen in the nation while there is a fishing prohibition.
The DA-BFAR is conducting this IEC (information, education, and communication) Campaign to help protect the livelihood of our local fishers and prevent competition between our local and imported fish products, according to Escoto. “As the government allows fish importation anew in order to fill in the supply gap while our conservation measures are in place and keep the prices of our fish commodities in the retail markets stable,” Escoto said.
In his statement, he was referring to the authorization of the importation of frozen fish products for “canning, processing, and institutional purchase.”
He continued by saying that the goal of the BFAR’s “Imported na isda sa merkado, pwede kapag otorisado” (Imported fish at the market, allowed when authorized) campaign is to assist sellers in comprehending and applying the current regulations.
The BFAR official stated that only fish imported under Fisheries Administrative Order (FAO) 259 and the most recent CNI (Certificate of Necessity to Import), which gives priority to municipal fishing associations/cooperatives and commercial fishing operators affected by the closed fishing season, are allowed to be sold in wet markets.
In addition, the agency is counting on the assistance of traders to stop illegally diverting imported frozen fish into the market.
He continued, “[The IEC intends] to persuade them not to sell imported fish goods meant for canning, processing, and institutional buyers, and help avoid, at their level, the illicit diversion of these products that are unapproved for wet markets.
The National Capital Region currently has 21 wet markets that the BFAR plans to visit.
The Department of Agriculture declared on November 10 that 25,000 tons of frozen fish, including round and bigeye scad, mackerel, bonito, and moonfish, might be imported.
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