China has announced it will halt imports of whole salmon from northern Norway from next week due to its worries that viruses carried by the products could threaten the Asian country’s fish farming industry, an official document showed Thursday. Starting on March 23, imports of whole salmon with heads or viscera from Norway’s northern counties of Sor-Trondelag, Troms and Nordland will be halted, China’s General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine (AQSIQ) said in a letter to the Norwegian authorities…Full Article: The Global Times Mar 2015

Key Points

  • Since the summer of 2014, according to China, 10 shipments of Norwegian salmon originating from three counties (Sor-Trondelag, Troms and Nordland) were found to contain viruses that can cause infectious salmon anaemia (ISA). As of 17 March 2015, the latest detection occurred on 27 February 2015.
  • Whole salmon from Norway’s other 16 counties (19 total) will be allowed to enter China starting on 18 April 2015, but only if they are accompanied with sanitary/safety certificates (i.e. free of ISA viruses or salmonid alphaviruses – SAVs).

ChinaAg Comments

  • In September 2014, China temporarily banned the importation of whole Norwegian salmon reportedly due to salmon anaemia and its viral variants. Norwegian processed salmon (i.e. no heads, gills, and entrails) was still allowed into China.
  • In January 2011, China agreed to make Scotland its preferred salmon supplier. This occurred shortly after the the Oslo-based Nobel organization awarded the 2010 Peace Prize to Liu Xiaobo, an imprisoned Chinese dissident.

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