This is a draft document and should be treated as such. You may download the document from the link at the bottom of this page.
Note: The AAQ has it's own "Safe Food" program, developed and managed in partnership with, "Safe Food Queensland". To find members who are operating under this plan, please refer to the "members page". Under the plan participation members product is tested for any chemical residues. All members listed have been tested for heavy metals and chemicals, including heavy metals and agricultural chemicals., and have passed these tests.
Consumers are increasingly concerned that the food they eat meets the following criteria:
Is the food safe?
Does it possess the required eating qualities?
Are production methods for this food environmentally sound?
The Aquaculture Association of Queensland Inc. recognises this challenge and believes that the industry is mature enough to meet those demands.
It is quite obvious that all responsible fish farmers will strive to comply with whatever food safety standards that apply to their product.. While as a primary industry, we may not be required to comply with the requirement for a full HACCP-based Food Safety Plan, it is becoming increasingly obvious that consumer pressure will drive this decision. The issue confronting our industry is whether we are willing to be progressive in implementing voluntary Food Safety Plans before prescriptive requirements are enforced.
While the growing and marketing of live fish may only have minimum exposure to risk, this industry is also aware that there is a rising demand for fresh chilled product, which is vulnerable to contamination during harvest, processing and transport. Unfortunately, all seafood is perceived by the public to be high risk. It is essential that we combat this perception by documenting standard procedures, which ensure that the safety of our product is beyond reproach.
The Aquaculture Association of Queensland Inc. has developed these Food Safety Guidelines with assistance from the Department of Primary Industries to address this need. To be effective, the Guideline must be seen as a working document, which is structured to respond to industry input, and the needs of newly developing processes. It is designed to begin the process of bringing the industry into line with new food regulations by way of practical recommendations and with a minimum of fuss. The Guidelines provides operators with background information, plain English directions and suggested formats for the documentation of procedures, which lie at the heart of any transparent Food Safety Plan. It is certainly not meant to be just another shelf adornment.
I recommend these Food Safety Guidelines to all serious freshwater finfish farmers.
Aquaculture Association of Queensland Inc.