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Spanish Tuna Fishermen Reject ANFACO’s Position On Pre-cooked Loins

The Spanish Fisheries Confederation (CEPESCA) has disapproved the intentions of ANFACO (National Association of Manufacturers of Canned Fish and Seafood) of competing in the canned tuna market by “dropping the prices for raw material by getting supply from fleets that show little responsibility”.
In a statement, CEPESCA said that ANFACO has requested an increase of quotas for tuna loins free of duty (30,000 tons) “unilaterally and prior to reaching a consensus” from the Inter-professional Organization INTERATUN.
The boatowner organizations ANABAC and OPAGAC, which are representing 100 percent of the Spanish tuna fleet, consider ANFACO’s petition damaging to the Spanish and European Community’s tuna industry.
“The tuna fleet is distancing itself from the petition of the canners. Instead of maintaining employment in Spain, their petition to increase the quota for tuna loins is creating a loss of jobs, as there is a larger work force needed to clean the whole round tuna,” CEPESCA said.
The Confederation has sent a letter to the Ministry  rejecting ANFACO’s request and asking the Spanish Government to remove the preferential quotas for imports of pre-cooked tuna loins, as per the proposed EU regulation on certain fishery products for the period 2013 -2015, currently under discussion.
According CEPESCA, the position of the canning association goes “against the opinion of the major Spanish tuna brands that are committed to quality, food security and sustainability and are opposed to this request within ANFACO.”
"This duty- free import of tuna loins will be the beginning of a total liberalization of canned tuna imports, which would mean the ruin of both the Spanish and EU tuna fleet, as well as of the canning industry itself, which has a short-sighted vision just looking for raw materials at low prices,” lamented the boatowners.
The Spanish tuna fleet believes that the EU market has sufficient supply of frozen pre-cooked tuna loins and whole round tuna to supply the Communitarian canning industry at the average prices set by the international market. "We are not facing a supply problem, but a price problem," CEPESCA said.