Shrimp farming practices have improved over the past 18 years such that imported shrimp no longer deserve their bad reputation, a study says.
Professor Dave Little and Dr Richard Newton, of Stirling’s Institute of Aquaculture found that shrimp have become much safer to eat as exporting countries meet the safety demands of importers more effectively.
The team, which included researchers from the Shanghai Ocean University, lamented that imported shrimp is still seen as being of low quality by some consumers and this is sometimes reflected in the mainstream press, and on the internet.
"Imported farmed shrimp are no less safe than any other seafood product,” said Dr Newton. “Consumers would need to eat more than 300g of shrimp per day to exceed the acceptable daily intake for antimicrobials.”
The study team reached their conclusion after examining 18 years of data in EU’s Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed. They found that the number of “alerts” about imported shrimp declined significantly despite the rise in volume in shrimp imports.
Almost 80 per cent of the world’s farmed shrimp comes from the waters of China, Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia and Indonesia, according to the UN Food and Agriculture Organization.