Azrou - In this holy month of Ramadan, the demand for fish and seafood significantly increases. It is an opportunity for fish sellers to invade markets with big quantities and very poor quality.
Azrou – In this holy month of Ramadan, the demand for fish and seafood significantly increases. It is an opportunity for fish sellers to invade markets with big quantities and very poor quality.
“Do Moroccans know that they are consuming radioactive Chinese fish?” asked Al Massae, Moroccan daily newspaper.
The daily devotes in its July 22 edition an entire page to imported fish from several Asian countries, especially during the month of Ramadan, to help explain the lack of supply on the national market.
Al Massae recalled that during last May, the services of the National Office of Food Safety (ONSSA) prohibited the arrival of a cargo of fish (Panga) in Casablanca. The shipment came from Vietnam, but the importer preferred the Administrative Court over ONSSA’s decision.
Al Massae believes that fish and seafood imports generate colossal turnover. For example, Morocco annually exports MAD 12 billion of seafood, mainly to European countries. In contrast, it imports food products, including fish, for MAD 40 billion (numbers of 2012). However, Morocco loses in the exchange as it exports marine products with high added value, and imports foreign currencies, and poor quality products from countries of Asia and Latin America.
Al Massae notes in its investigation that the majority of the national fisheries’ products are mainly intended for export. This is especially true for certain species of shellfish, crustaceans and seafood.
The daily also raises the issue of the effectiveness of controls on Morocco’s borders, noting that it has become almost impossible elsewhere to import seafood without going through strict control operations. This is also valid for all kinds of food in order to land on our plates.
Awareness is greatly needed among citizens regarding these more affordable products.
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