Control of Fresh Fish at Importation

Control of fresh fish imported pursuant to Council Regulation (EC) No 2406/96 laying down common marketing standards for certain fishery products

The common marketing standards have established uniform commercial characteristics for the products concerned throughout the Community market in order to prevent distortions of competition, allow uniform application of the price system and improve the protection of species particularly at risk. A total of about 35 sea fish such as bluefin tuna, spiny dogfish, catfish, anglerfish, gurnard, crustaceans and certain shellfish species have been included in this Regulation. The products are classified in freshness classes Extra, A and B, with the skin, mucous membranes, eyes, gills, abdominal lobes, odour and muscular flesh being inspected for freshness. Fish must also meet certain size classes and minimum lengths to protect juvenile fish.

Control of canned fish

Regulation (EEC) No 2136/89 established common marketing standards and trade descriptions for preserved sardines. This is intended to keep inferior qualities away from the market and to allow fair competition through trade names. Oils and other infusion liquids are also randomly tested for real and purity. Usually canned fish in large containers of 19,000 kg are imported into Austria mainly from Thailand, the Philippines, Indonesia and Morocco.

The Section for Marketing Standards and IUU Fisheries shall also review the common marketing standards for canned tuna and bonito under Regulation (EEC) No 1536/92 at the time of import checks. Clear sales designations, certain forms of presentation, infusion designations used and certain minimum quantities of fish in cans are examined, among other things. For reasons of market transparency, only fish of uniform species may be canned.

Austria-wide control of consumer information on fishery and aquaculture products according to Regulation (EU) No 1379/2013

Consumer information is monitored at all stages of trade solely by BAES, with the aim of improving consumer information on the important characteristics of fishery products and of increasing consumer confidence in the products marketed through this increased transparency. The products concerned by the labelling are those in which the fish is marketed in a more or less natural state and without additional recipe performance; in particular fresh fish, smoked fish and processed frozen fish products and raw and processed fresh and frozen crustaceans and molluscs. According to the provisions of the common standards, the commercial name, scientific name, production method and fishing area are checked for accuracy from the moment the fish is caught right through to the retail trade, with particular emphasis being placed on exact traceability.

Furthermore, the defrost notice ("defrosted") may also have to be made available to the consumer in the retail trade (Art. 58 para. 6 Control Regulation (EC) No. 1224/2009).

The trade names are those listed in the Annex to § 4 of the Regulation on the Control of Marketing of Fishery Products and Aquaculture - BGBl. II No. 49/2016.

    Control planning

    The annual control plan specifies the number of sampling and/or compliance checks, as well as the number of establishments to be controlled and the operational controls to be carried out. The planned figures determine sampling and take into account follow-up activities due to infringements from previous periods and capacities for ad hoc activities.

    The target figures stated with regard to sampling and/or compliance inspections, as well as the establishments to be inspected and the operational inspections to be carried out, as well as the implementation of the inspection plan, were determined in consultation and agreement with the organizational units concerned, so that it can be assumed that the availability of resources can be planned.

    Overview of the inspection plans and reports

    Legal Regulations

    Control of fresh fish in the import:

    Council Regulation (EC) No 2406/96 of 26 November 1996 laying down common marketing standards for certain fishery products.

    Control of marketing standards for fishery products and minimum size for fish BGBl. II No. 263/2008 of 22 July 2008.

    Control of canned fish

    Council Regulation (EEC) No 2136/89 of 21 June 1989 laying down common marketing standards for preserved sardines and trade descriptions for preserved sardines and sardine-type products in preserved form.

    Council Regulation (EEC) No 1536/92 of 9 June 1992 laying down common marketing standards for preserved tuna and bonito.

    Control of consumer information

    Regulation (EU) No 1379/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 11.12.2013 on the common organisation of the markets in fishery and aquaculture products.

    Monitoring of fruit and vegetables and other agricultural products

    • fresh fruit and vegetables
    • table potatoes
    • green bananas
    • Nuts in shell
    • dried grapes
    • cultivated mushrooms
    • eggs
    • poultry
    • hatching eggs and chicks
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