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Claims submitted in February by Russia and Brazil, following shipments of Chilean salmon having skin injuries, prompted the National Fisheries and Aquaculture Service (Sernapesca) to decide to strengthen controls.

Sernapesca stresses that the markets in Brazil and Russia are very important to Chile, and extremely strict as to the eventual presence of skin injuries of the salmon specimens they import.

After the notifications sent by the two countries, the Foreign Trade Undersecretariat of Sernapesca this week began developing various activities related to skin injury issues of salmon specimens in Los Lagos Region.

The delegation, headed by the undersecretary of the area, Cecilia Solis, carried out several inspections of fish plants in order to detect the products with injuries in origin and avoid the target markets from reporting on these findings.

The official explained that “in the case of Russia, the regulations indicate that the product should be sent without injuries while in the Brazilian case, the rule literally sets that the product must not have nasty appearance.”

Solis noted that this issue is of vital importance to maintain the quality standards of the Chilean salmon industry and to take care of the good relationships with these markets.

Besides increasing the number of shipping and plant inspections, Sernapesca plans to perform awareness-raising activities within the production sector to socialise the problems that have been discussed since 2012.

As part of these activities, it has been scheduled to hold a meeting on Thursday in Puerto Varas, with the participation of Sernapesca National Director and Aquaculture Undersecretary.

“The idea is to reinforce the importance for the industry that meeting the requirements of both markets has and to avoid restrictive measures from them,” explained Solis.