On May 20, 2024, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) published an updated Import Alert 16-129, “Detention Without Physical Examination of Seafood Products Due to Nitrofurans,” to now include Choice Canning Company Unit II (A Division of Choice Trading Corporation Pvt Ltd). With the FDA’s announcement, the Choice Canning processing plant joins twelve other Indian shrimp processing plants on the Import Alert.

In stories published earlier this month by SeafoodSource and Undercurrent News, Choice Canning argued that shrimp entry lines refused by the FDA for veterinary drug residues in April were mistakenly attributed to the company, contending that the contaminated shrimp was processed and shipped by another Indian shrimp company, Alpha Marine. Nevertheless, the FDA’s recent revision of Import Alert 16-129 specifies Choice Canning.

As the Southern Shrimp Alliance has previously observed, a review of bill of lading information show that at least two shipments of shrimp reported to have been processed and packed by Choice Canning utilized the same FDA registration number (15882740826) that Alpha Marine has been using for nearly eight years. Further, bill of lading information indicates that Choice Canning sources shrimp from Alpha Marine and that shipments of shrimp from Alpha Marine to Choice Canning reference the same FDA registration number that has also been associated with shrimp purportedly processed and packed by Choice Canning.

Choice Canning Company was the subject of The Outlaw Ocean Project’s investigative report, “India Shrimp: A Growing Goliath,” based on the disclosures of whistleblower Joshua Farinella detailing allegations of forced labor practices and the intentional export of adulterated shrimp to the United States. Yet, even after the publication of those allegations and the evidentiary support for them, Choice Canning has maintained its four-star Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) certification from the Global Seafood Alliance (P10214). Alpha Marine, the shrimp exporter that Choice Canning has accused of improperly using its FDA facility registration number, has also maintained its four-star BAP certification (P10651).

Review the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s Import Alert 16-129 “Detention Without Physical Examination of Seafood Products Due to Nitrofurans,” publication date: May 20, 2024:  https://shrimpalliance.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/05/Import-Alert-16-129-May-20-2024.pdf