SEOUL, Korea, April 2 (Korea Bizwire) – From now on, grocery shoppers will be able to check exactly how fresh the fish on the shelf is by looking into their smartphone. All they need is type in the serial number on the package of mackerel or scan the barcode to see who caught it, when, and where it was processed.
The Ministry of Oceans, and Fisheries said that it would kick off a scheme to track domestically produced seafoods for safety purposes. It is just like what the National Agricultural Cooperative Federation does in managing beef production, processing, and retail distribution.
In the same way, the National Federation of Fisheries Cooperatives, jointly with the ministry and large-scale discount retailers, will make available the data from the sea to the fishmonger’s shelf for consumers to purchase their fish with peace of mind.
In the beginning, the program will cover seven fish species including mackerel, hairtail, pollack, yellow corvina, halibut, abalone, and eel. An effort will be focused especially on the first three most popular fish species as these are most imported items from Japan where concerns of radioactive pollution have not subsided.
Fish buyers can log on to the ministry’s seafood tracking service website (www.fishtrac.go.kr) or mobile app (m.fishtrace.go.kr) and type in the tracking number on the package or scan the barcode. Customers can get the same information by calling the automated voice service number at 080-788-2626.
The same tracking service was introduced earlier in 2008 but the participation ratio has been low at 7.6 percent as fish retailers are free to sign up for the service. This time around, the government ministry has stepped in as consumer fears mounted over Japan-originated fish products and oil spill-affected mollusks.
Written by Sean Chung (firstname.lastname@example.org)