NOAA Fisheries is accepting public comments on a proposed regulation to implement a traceability program for U.S. farmed shrimp and abalone. The regulation will establish comparable reporting requirements to those required for imported seafood products under the Seafood Import Monitoring Program (SIMP).
SIMP and the traceability system it established facilitates better data collection and retention, sharing, and analysis among relevant regulators and enforcement authorities for imported seafood—marking a significant step forward for addressing illegal, unregulated, and unreported (IUU) fishing and seafood fraud.
Compliance with SIMP requirements started on January 1, 2018; however the effective date of compliance with respect to shrimp (the largest U.S. seafood import) and abalone was stayed until a comparable traceability program for domestic aquaculture could be established.
Establishing comparable requirements for domestic aquacultured shrimp and abalone allows imports of shrimp and abalone to be subject to SIMP requirements, further leveling the playing field for U.S. fishermen, aquaculture producers, and seafood producers who adhere to rules.
Congress has directed the Secretary of Commerce to establish this domestic traceability program by December 31, 2018. Comments are due by November 26.
NOAA Fisheries is committed to working closely with aquaculture producers to develop a program that provides the necessary comparable data, while reducing stakeholders’ compliance burden to the maximum extent practicable. Two webinars will be held about the proposed regulation on October 24 at 3 pm ET and November 5 at 10 am ET.
Click here to learn more about this proposed regulation and/or to register for a webinar.