Let us all join the campaign of Ban Antibiotics – Save Indian Aqua culture Industry and Exports.
Current Trends of Aquaculture:
Aquaculture is the current booming industry which is providing employment opportunities and plays a major role in the happy living of many families. 90 percent of the output gets exported to foreign countries and there is huge demand and a high market price for our products. Shrimp had become the most favorite recipe for foreigners as well. For Andhra Pradesh 70 percent of export value is from Aquaculture and it is the major source of revenue generation
In the midst of such great trends of aquaculture our exports are banned and rejected at foreign countries. Why? Let’s discuss.
Antibiotics in Aquaculture – A Strict NO :
With the rapid growth and demand for aqua culture, it has become a livelihood for many, and the species are said to be very sensitive and diseases prone easily. Any small disease to the species might result in the loss of the complete culture. So as a preventive measure farmers started using ‘antibiotics’, and found good results after using this and finally resulted in over usage of antibiotics out of which few are unapproved antibiotics.
Antibiotics are used as medicines to cure diseases in the species but now antibiotics are used to prevent diseases, increase the growth rate of the species. Over use of antibiotics in aquaculture can create public health issues like allergy, cancer, anemia and other serious diseases.
Exports from India are banned in 4 countries and The FDA of United States also announced that they would increase the testing for aquaculture products.
The Marine Products Export Development Authority (MPEDA) has released a list of 20 antibiotics and pharmacologically active substances banned for use in aquaculture.
- Nitrofurans including: Furaltadone, Furazolidone, Furylfuramide, Nifuratel, Nifuroxime, Nifurprazine, Nitrofurantoin, Nitrofurazone
- Nalidixic acid
- Aristolochia spp and preparations thereof
- Other nitroimidazoles
- Diethylstilbestrol (DES)
- Sulfonamide drugs (except approved Sulfadimethoxine, Sulfabromomethazine and Sulfaethoxypyridazine)
Impact or consequences of using antibiotics :
Our major exports are to US and Europe and those countries look up to India as a reliable and stable supplier, now due to this effect of antibiotics if any one country ban our products which eventually result in the ban of our exports to the other country. Which impact or result in no aqua culture exports, no exports result in low revenue, and low revenue and less market price value result in no aqua farming. This completely affects the aqua industry to drastic downfall.
It is also tested and accepted that using of antibiotics in cultivating is harmful to humans, time to join hands and be responsible towards public health and understand that antibiotics cannot help the industry to sustain for long term with continuous growth and market value.
Awareness programs should be conducted to aqua stakeholders and make them understand how harmful are the antibiotics for humans when consumed and also the losses incurred when our exports are rejected. Educate them on following better management practices of farming.
- Approved antibiotics can only be used
- Testing from the seed level should be implemented.
- Water testing is mandatory
- Certification standard should be re evaluated
- Strict rules if unapproved antibiotics are used or sold
- In each stage testing and approvals are mandatory
- Basic training and certification programs for farmers to start aqua culture
- Enrollment test by MPEDA for shrimp farmers
- Clearance certificates for exports
Finally, it is a good step towards betterment of aqua industry. Let us make the shut doors open and re enter the market of our exports in a bigger and better way.