Quality and food safety assurance
Because shrimp enterprises that are VASEP’s members contributing around 90% of shrimp exports from Vietnam, therefore VASEP through its Shrimp Committee has collaborated with the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD), the NAFIQAD which belongs to MARD to solve the industry obstacles and problems including quality assurance, safety hygiene and the compliance with rules, regulations of Vietnam law and foreign markets.
Thanks to the collaboration between Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD), the National Agro-Forestry-Fisheries Quality Assurance Department (NAFIQAD) which belongs to MARD and Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP) in assurance of quality, safety hygiene and the compliance with rules, regulations of Vietnam law and foreign markets and the advanced certifications and compliance of Law of Labor, Law of Food Safety and the regulations of Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, shrimp companies are implementing good practices in both farms and processing plants including shrimp products. Beside, every year, the companies must be inspected by the independent audit agencies, international certification bodies and Vietnam authorities.
To maintain 100 importing markets and develop the new market places, Vietnam shrimp companies must keep their reputation by the control the whole system to meet the higher and higher requirements and regulations from the world market. Some examples include:
- For labor issue: working hours for employees in Vietnam shrimp companies have been applied in accordance with Labor Code 2012, Decree 45/2013/NĐ-CP dated 10/05/2013 by the Government.
- Labor Union at shrimp enterprises: the Law regulates that every shrimp companies must declare and register Working Regulations with the local Labor Department, Invalids and Social Affairs in order to protect interest of workers including working hours and working conditions…
- Getting ASC, Global GAP and other international standards shows that Vietnam shrimp farmers and processors are not allowed to use antibiotics and unnecessary chemicals in their production chain. Most importantly, Vietnamese authorities now have regulations and programs that strictly control the use of chemicals and antibiotics in aquaculture and seafood processing. Directorate of Fisheries (D-Fish) and local fisheries authorities regularly guide and inspect the use of antibiotics and develop the shrimp industry in the direction of chain linkage (with strict contractual , controlled production. , not using or restricting the use of antibiotics, stable consumption of products ...), certified shrimp farming.
- Vietnam has been implementing the National Residue monitoring Program (according to Circular No. 31/2015/TT-BNNPTNT dated October 06th, 2015), implemented by NAFIQAD and every year send annual report on results of previous year and plan for the next year to the EU.
- For seafood processors and exporters: they have been carrying out the program of internal monitoring and prevention of antibiotic residues in products (mandated according to Circular No. 48/ /2013/TT-BNNPTNT): Collect samples to test antibiotic residues and toxic substances at the farm before harvest; Take samples to test antibiotic residue to control when receiving raw materials before processing.
- Before exporting, the competent authorities of Vietnam (NAFIQAD) take the sample from the consignment to test antibiotic residue before issuing the health certificates which is legally required by all European border inspection authorities for all imports of shrimp and all food coming from Vietnam to European markets.
Among total seafood exports of Vietnam, shrimp exports accounted for the largest share with the highest and most stable growth. After 10 years (2008-2018), shrimp export turnover increased by nearly 120% from US$1.6 billion to 3.55 billion dollars in 2018 with the average annual growth of 9%. Shrimp exports tended to account for a larger proportion of total seafood exports: from 36% to 50%.