IN LIGHT of reports of plastic-like substances allegedly coating imported mackerels which surfaced on social media, Department of Agriculture (DA) in Davao Region and Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR)-Davao clarified that Davao City is cleared from such issue during a meeting in DA compound on Friday afternoon.
Recently, video clips showed an unidentified man peeling a transparent material off several pieces of galunggong or big-bellied round scad and mackerel that prompted the concerned agencies to investigate the issue.
Based on the result from the Philippine Institute of Pure and Applied Chemistry (Pipac) of the Ateneo de Manila University, two specimens from frozen fish and thawed fish sent by BFAR which is allegedly coated with plastic resulted to negative.
According to BFAR Director Fatma Idris, the results of the test revealed that the plastic-like substances are similar to skin or hair protein and are naturally found in the fish.
“These are, therefore, not plastic materials tightly coating the fish,” Idris adds.
Despite the result, BFAR advised the public to watch for any unusual qualities that they might find in any seafood commodity and immediately report the matter to the agency and other concerned government authorities.
“If in doubt of the fish or any seafood products, they can submit their samples direct to PIPAC in Ateneo de Manila University because we don’t have a testing laboratory here in Davao,” she said.
She assured that BFAR will continue to implement the necessary measures to ensure that all seafood products sold in the market are fit and safe for human consumption.
Meanwhile, Ricardo Oñate Jr., DA-Davao director, also assured the public that the agency will continue to provide safe, affordable and available food for the consumers.
He also encouraged the public to be vigilant and report whatever unusual appearance found on the products they have bought. (PR)