Caterers issued warning over seafood

These days, it is easy for firms to source catering supplies, including kitchen equipment, food, drink and so on. However, before they hand over money for certain products, it is important that firms like this conduct some checks.

For example, the Marine Management Organisation (MMO), Food Standards Agency (FSA) and British Hospitality Association have highlighted the significance of checking whether or not seafood has come from a reputable supplier.

The organisations noted that under British Hospitality Association Scheme 2005, it is a criminal offence to buy fish caught from a boat that is not licensed or registered for commercial fishing. Therefore, it is vital that caterers make sure the seafood they buy can be traced to a legal source.

Head of coastal operations for the MMO Rod Henderson remarked: “Caterers should be conscious of the trade in illegal fish caught and sold from unlicensed and unregistered boats. Such supply chains can have a negative impact – both on the price and availability of a wider range of fish for customers. They can also affect fish stocks, a resource we want to protect for future generations.”

Meanwhile, head of the food hygiene policy branch for the FSA Linden Jack added: “Shellfish bought from illegal sources will not have been subjected to the checks which ensure it is fit for human consumption.”

He noted that shellfish from approved beds are monitored to make sure that they meet standards for microbiological contamination, chemical contamination and algal toxins.

If illegally harvested products are used, consumers can have no guarantee that they are free from these sources of contamination and their health may be placed at risk if they eat them.

As long as managers make sure they choose a reliable source of catering supplies, kitchen equipment and so on, they can be sure they are only getting the best quality products.


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