NFI Defends Carbon Monoxide MAP to Maintain Fish Color

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Following sworn testimony on Nov.13 before the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, the National Fisheries Institute here said it is defending the use of carbon monoxide or filtered smoke.

The process, according to NFI, was recognized in 1999 by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as safe for maintaining the color of fish. NFI said the FDA requires that all seafood products treated with this technology be labeled, along with a description of process's technical function. In addition, the label also must include the phrase "previously frozen" when seafood is frozen and thawed.

"This method of preserving fish provides high quality seafood, without compromising the safety of the product," NFI said in a statement. "Since this technology was approved by FDA, there have been no reports of illness associated with its use. Moreover, labeling requirements ensure that consumers are fully informed about the technology and its application to seafood products.

"The National Fisheries Institute fully supports FDA's labeling requirements for the use of carbon monoxide or filtered smoke. By reading this labeling, along with safety handling instructions, consumers receive important information on the attributes, quality and safety of the seafood products they purchase and enjoy."
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