Agri Business

DNA bar-coding can prevent mislabelling of processed seafood, says fisheries scientist

AJ Vinayak Mangaluru | Updated on January 11, 2018 Published on May 18, 2017

A study conducted using the DNA bar-coding method in Maharashtra restaurants had found 100 per cent mislabelling of crab dishes.

You are at a seafood restaurant and order your favourite premium crab dish. To your surprise you find that the dish you have been served is not what the menu promised, though packaged as a premium variety.

Now, a fisheries scientist has suggested a technology that can end the practice.

Vivek Rohidas Vartak, a fisheries scientist from the Panvel-based Khar Land Research Station of Dr Balasaheb Sawant Konkan Krishi Vidyapeeth, says that DNA bar-coding of seafood can help prevent such mislabelling of processed seafood items. Delivering a talk on ‘DNA labelling of seafood’ at a technical session at the biennial aquaculture event, ‘Aqua Aquaria India 2017’, organised by Marine Products Export Development Authority in Mangaluru on Tuesday, Vartak said that since most people do not notice labelling, eateries pass off inferior species of fishes and crabs as superior varieties.

He said a study conducted by his team using the DNA bar-coding method in Maharashtra restaurants had found 100 per cent mislabelling of crab dishes.

DNA labelling involves taxonomical and molecular study, as also the creation and application of DNA labels, he said. He suggested that governments implement DNA bar-coding of processed seafoods, and this could be the part of the restaurant bill.



After filing for an Indian patent for ‘DNA bar-code assisted labelling for fish, molluscs, and crustaceans’, he said now he will approach the European and American authorities for patents for this technology.

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Published on May 18, 2017
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