FDA’s Refusals of Antibiotic-Contaminated Shrimp Highest Since 2016; Total Seafood Entry Line Refusals in September Second Lowest in Last Twenty Years

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) published detailed data this morning regarding 58 total seafood entry line refusals in September, of which 3 (5.2%) were of shrimp for reasons related to banned antibiotics.

Through September, the FDA has refused a total of 64 entry lines of antibiotic-contaminated shrimp, the highest number of entry line refusals for these reasons since 2016.

The three shrimp entry lines refused in September for reasons related to antibiotics were for shipments from a single Vietnamese exporter:

  •  Can Tho Import Export Fishery Limited Company, aka CAFISH (Vietnam), a company that is currently listed on Import Alert 16-129 (“Detention Without Physical Examination of Seafood Products Due to Nitrofurans”) as of March 4, 2021, had two entry lines refused for shrimp contaminated with nitrofurans and veterinary drug residues by the Division of Northeast Imports on September 17, 2021 and had one entry line refused for shrimp contaminated with nitrofurans by the Division of Southeast Imports on September 2, 2021.

As shown in the chart below, the fifty-eight (58) total seafood entry line refusals reported by the FDA for September is the second lowest ever reported for that month since the agency started publishing entry line refusal data in 2002.

Over the previous nineteen (19) years, the FDA had only refused less entry lines of seafood last year, in 2020, with thirty-four (34) in September. The FDA’s reporting for September 2021 appears to only be up through September 24th and, as such, it is likely that this number will be increased in November when the FDA revises its reporting for the month to include refusals that took place between September 25th through September 30th. However, even anticipating upward revisions, the total number of seafood entry line refusals for the month is likely to be substantially below the average of 143 entry lines refused over the previous nineteen (19) years for the second year in a row.


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