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Alliance works to repair image of Taiwan's tilapia at Busan expo

2013/11/16 22:25:23

Taipei, Nov. 16 (CNA) The Taiwan Tilapia Alliance, a confederation of fish farmers, said Saturday it will take part at a seafood expo in South Korea's second city to fix the damage to Taiwan's tilapia farmers caused by a false report on the Korean TV station Channel A.

The alliance plans to show videos to illustrate how water quality and other aspects of Taiwan's tilapia farms meet global standards during the Busan International Seafood & Fisheries Expo, which starts Nov. 21.

Alliance chairman Tsai Chun-hsiung said that his organization had planned to hold a press conference in Seoul on Nov. 20 to refute the charges against Taiwan's tilapia industry reported in a Channel A program. The press event has been canceled however, Tsai said, since Channel A issued an online statement correcting the report.

The website for the weekly food program "Food X-File" wrote that the images of ponds covered in algae shown in its Oct. 25 broadcast were abandoned and were not currently being used as tilapia farms as its report said.

"Once consumer confidence has recovered, the orders for Taiwan's tilapia will come back," Tsai said confidently.

Shipments of the fish to South Korea dropped by some 100 tons worth NT$25 millions (US$845,450) over the past month, according to Wang Yi-feng, another member of the alliance said.

Wang said that South Korean trade companies should take it upon themselves to pass the corrected information to restaurant operators to help get things back on track.

Tsai Yueh-ju, a Yunlin County councilor, who helped the alliance filed its complaints, urged officials from South Korea and the TV station to show their sincerity over the incident by promoting Taiwan's tilapia.

(By Yeh Tzu-kang, Chen Che-fong and Maia Huang)