Banned substance furazolidone (AOZ) detected in shrimp at French border

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Banned substance furazolidone (AOZ) detected in shrimp at French border


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14 April 2021: Banned substance furazolidone (AOZ) detected in shrimp at French border

As per an alert through RASFF – the Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed for the EU, shrimp imported from India has been rejected at the French border in March 2021 for containing a banned substance, known as furazolidone (AOZ). The shrimp product has since been destroyed and did not make it into the market for distribution.

Nitrofuran antibiotics, the parent compound of AOZ, were banned for use in animal food production in the EU in 1995 and 2009 in the US for its reported carcinogenic and mutagenic characteristics. However due to the drugs low cost and effectiveness in controlling disease it is still in use despite the ban.

Randox Food Diagnostics

Randox Food Diagnostics have developed a highly accurate and reliable immunoassay array which detects Nitrofuran residues including AOZ, AMOZ, AHD and SEM.

Available on the Evidence Investigator, our Antimicrobial Array III utilises our patented Biochip Array Technology which provides screening of up to 54 meat and seafood samples. The Evidence Investigator provides results for multiple drug residues and toxins in just 2.5 hours, saving the user both time and money compared to other screening and confirmatory methods.

Randox Food Diagnostics also provide a vast variety of ELISA kits to test for antibiotics in meat and seafood tissue, offering excellent cross-reactivity and unrivalled limits of detection. With results providing great correlation with confirmatory methods, we ensure that better science means safer food.

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For more information on tissue screening methods from Randox Food Diagnostics please visit the links below.

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Contact us or visit our Randox Food Diagnostics website.

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Antibiotic testing in shrimp

Seafood is one of the most important exports in India with its shrimp being a staple food in many countries worldwide. However, 2017 and 2018 saw 27 shipments of shrimp refused entry into the US by the FDA. This was followed closely in January 2019, when 26 lines were refused due to the presence of two banned antibiotics, nitrofurans and chloramphenicol.

With Indian shrimp accounting for around one third of the countries seafood exports, India has expressed its concern over the rejections. It responded by calling the tests on the products ‘too stringent’.

The global shrimp industry is estimated to be worth around $30 billion and India’s market share is estimated at 13% in value terms.

Dr. Ramraj, President of the All Indian Shrimp Hatcheries Association has stated, “some of the metabolites in shrimp and crustacean shells are known to mimic antibiotics and therefore could give false results”.

The use of antibiotics in shrimp farming in India is banned. Madhusudano Rao, Principal scientist at India’s Central Institute of Fisheries Technology has said, “All shrimp hatchery operators and shrimp farmers and advised to use only these antibiotic- free inputs during shrimp farming”.

Randox Food Diagnostics offer the most comprehensive range of ELISA and Biochip tests currently on the market, specifically designed to identify and detect the smallest traces of the most prevalent antibiotics used in seafood, including nitrofurans and chloramphenicol.

For more information please email us at: or visit our website at