SeaFood Business

MAY 2013

SeaFood Business is the global trusted authority for seafood buyers and sellers. We are the seafood industry's leading trade magazine with more than 30 years of experience. Our coverage is based on the "business" of buying and selling seafood.

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News Recap WASHINGTON, D.C. In bRIef Leroy Seafood Group of Bergen, Norway, purchased 39.74 percent of the shares in Villa organic of Finnmark, Norway, at an average price of 49 cents per share. The total purchase price is $28 million (€21 million). Days before, SalMar ASA acquired an additional 13.45 percent of Villa's shares for $8.3 million (€6.4 million); the salmon producer now controls 49.72 percent of the company's shares. Spanish fshing company Pescanova fled for insolvency after negotiations with creditors, in addition to boardroom disputes, failed to settle its future. One of the largest fshing companies in the world, Pescanova's debts are estimated between €1.5 billion and €2.8 billion, according to reports, and has run out of cash to cover payments to suppliers and taxes. American Seafoods Co., blue North trading Co. and orca bay Seafoods are now certifed under the Food and Agriculture Organization-based Responsible Fisheries Management (RFM) program. Day boat Seafood in Lake Park, Fla., received Marine Stewardship Council certifcation for the U.S. North Atlantic swordfsh pelagic longline and handgear buoy line fshery. All U.S. licensed fshermen using longline and buoy gear in the area are eligible to share in the certifcation, subject to signing a sharing agreement with the client group. Cermaq subsidiary Mainstream Chile sold its Calbuco, Chile, processing plant to Australis Seafoods for $11.7 million. Cermaq indicated the move was part of a streamlining of its operations, and will allow it to concentrate on its remaining plants. Seafood for the Future, a nonproft conservation group, gave high marks to Grieg Seafood for responsible aquaculture practices in a recent peerreviewed study of the company's British Columbia operations. The promotion program of the Aquarium of the Pacifc concluded that Grieg is "operating responsibly and continues to make measurable progress toward reducing its impacts." The initial evidence will support that other non-red meat categories have probably done a little bit better on the back of the horse meat [problem], although the other trend is toward primary protein products in their raw state rather than their processed state. — Mike Coupe, group commercial director, Sainsbury's (see Global Retail, p. 38) SeaFood Business M embers of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives are taking aim at a catfsh inspection program decried as wasteful by seafood and agriculture industry groups, budget watchdogs and polic yma kers. And the White House's desires to eliminate duplicate programs may ultimately spell its doom. U.S. Sens John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.) introduced Senate Bill 632 to repeal a U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) program for inspecting all imported catfsh. In the House, Reps. Vicky Hartzler (R-Mo.) and Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-Calif.) introduced a similar bill, HR 1313. Inspection of imported seafood is the dominion of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, but the 2008 Farm Bill contained a provision moving authority over inspecting catfsh imports to the USDA. Although the bill passed, the provision hasn't gone into effect yet. In early April, President Obama's 2014 budget proposal called for taking the USDA out of catfsh inspections. Supporters say the move was designed to ensure that inspections would be more thorough, thus protecting public health. Sen. Tad Cochran (R-Miss.) sponsored the catfsh inspection program provision, saying it was key to ensure imports and domestic products meet the same quality standards and to prevent use of harmful chemicals that are banned in the United States. Te inspection program's critics have argued that the move was prompted not by an interest in public health, but by the domestic catfsh industry, and was designed to block imports from Vietnam. McCain cited a Government Accountability Ofce audit of the program that shows it has already cost about $20 million in administrative costs, and will cost millions more, while inspections haven't even begun yet. "Its true purpose is to prop up the domestic catfsh industry at the expense of the American consumer and our international trade partners," says McCain. McCain seems to have no shortage of support. A website,, carries a list of dozens of food safety, budget watchdog and agricultural advocacy groups all calling for the program's removal. Te site also lists more than 50 congressmen and senators as opponents of the program. — Sean Murphy Snap ShotS Direct quote 8 Congress aims to ax catfsh program May 2013 Luck be an oyster: Tommy Beaudreau, acting assistant secretary of land and minerals management for the U.S. Department of the Interior, just happened to be the lucky recipient of the 3 millionth oyster served at Ralph Brennan's Red Fish Grill on Bourbon Street in New Orleans on March 20. Brennan served the dish himself, as balloons flled the room during an impromptu ceremony. Photo courtesy of Ralph Brennan Restaurant Group Brooklyn-based Acme Smoked fish Corp. received British Retail Consortium certifcation for meeting strict global standards for food safety, hygiene and quality control. For updated NEWS, go to

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