The main objectives of the project are to contribute to the development of Latin American regional emerging seafood markets; provide technical assistance for the development of high quality products; and to give assistance to enterprises in two Latin American ports to prepare investment programmes for upgrading their plants.
The successful implementation of the project, which is based in Brazil and Argentina, will improve competitiveness of the region’s fishery industry, develop new markets in the MERCOSUR region and expand traditional export markets in the EC, the US and Japan. The implementation of quality control procedures will also improve the export competitiveness of the participating companies. Product diversification and the adding of value to primary products are key elements of this project. The social impact of the project will be reflected in terms of job creation.
The project will comprise the following components:
a) development of value-added products;
b) assistance in the implementation of quality control systems;
c) assistance in the preparation of investment programmes for the participating companies; and,
d) a dissemination programme.
Project activities began in March 1999 and efforts were concentrated in Rio Grande, Brazil on the development of value-added products and assistance in the implementation of a quality control system. A comprehensive audit was undertaken of the technical and sanitary conditions of the participating plants and corrective actions were taken as necessary. Intensive training programs were organised at plant level with the participation of workers and management personnel on fish hygiene, sound manufacturing practices and the application of the HACCP concept. A range of products was selected and experimental trials were conducted. With the installation of new machinery, an increased volume of value-added products will be produced for market testing. Increased efforts will be directed to marketing and economic feasibility studies.