Thirteen partners from Mediterranean countries join forces to improve traceability and reduce fraud in the fish supply chain
The SUREFISH project, in which ITENE will contribute its experience in traceability solutions, will seek to solve the problem generated by species substitution and mislabelling.
The SUREFISH project (www.surefish.eu), in which the Packaging, Transport and Logistics Research Centre (ITENE) participates along with 12 other partners from Mediterranean countries, will provide solutions for the traceability and authentication of fish, thus reducing the fraud present in this sector today.
SUREFISH (2020-2023), financed with 2 million euros by the PRIMA (Partnership on Research and Innovation in the Mediterranean Area) Program in the framework of the Horizon 2020 program, brings together organisations, companies and research centres from Spain, Italy, Tunisia, Egypt and Lebanon with an interdisciplinary approach to, through R&D, ensure fish authentication and reduce fraud based on RFID, Blockchain, TTI (time-temperature indicators) and tamper-proof technologies as well as to harmonize and validate related analytical methods and create a trans-national laboratories network.
Fish chain is particularly vulnerable to fraud, primarily to species substitution and mislabelling. The consequent incorrect labelling of the fish itself brings to a low confidence on Mediterranean fish products.
To alleviate this situation, the project partners have been working since last March on innovative solutions to obtain the unequivocal traceability necessary to confirm the authenticity of fish products. To this end, four pilot cases will be implemented among the different countries associated to the project: Tunisia (on fresh and marinated anchovies), Egypt (on fresh farmed tilapia fillets), Lebanon (on fresh groupers) and Spain (on Bluefin tuna).
Consumers will be provided a mobile APP for smartphones to obtain information concerning to traceability and authenticity of fish they consume, which will positively impact on the recovery of consumer confidence in the Mediterranean fish sector.
ITENE, which will bring to the project its experience in traceability solutions, will work together with ENCO, the Università degli Studi di Napoli Federico II (UNINA), the Centro Nacional de Tecnología y Seguridad Alimentaria (CNTA), the Institut National des Sciences et Technologies de la Mer (INSTM), the Central Laboratory for Aquaculture Research (CLAR), the American University of Beirut (AUB), the Slow Food Tebourba association (ASS. SLOW FOOD), the industrial association ANFACO-CECOPESCA, the fish SMEs Group Didon Marée, Fish Basket, Sofia For Fresh and Frozen Fish Trading S.A.R.L (SOFIA) and BALFEGO, as well as the company Ingenieria y Control Electrónico S.A. (INGE).