The Marine Products Export Development Authority (MPEDA) was established by an act of Parliament in 1972. The erstwhile Marine Products Export Promotion Council established by the Government of India in September 1961 was converted into MPEDA on 24th August 1972. MPEDA is given the importance to promote the marine products industry with special reference to exports from the country. It is necessary that this organisation would take all actions to develop and augment the resources required for promoting the exports of “all varieties of fishery products known commercially as shrimp, prawn, lobster, crab, fish, shellfish, other aquatic animals or plants or part thereof and any other products which the authority may, by notification in the Gazette of India, declare to be marine products for the purposes of (the) Act”. The Act gives power to MPEDA to regulate exports of marine products and take all steps needed for ensuring sustained, quality seafood exports from the country. MPEDA is given the authority to set guidelines for itself any matters which the future might require for protecting and augmenting the seafood exports from the country. It is also empowered to carry out an inspection of marine products, its raw material, fixing standards, specifications, and training and also take all necessary steps for marketing the seafood overseas.
MPEDA is the major agency for the holistic development of the seafood industry in India to realize its full export potential as a nodal agency. Based on the recommendations of MPEDA, Government of India notified new standards for fishing vessels, storage premises, processing plants, and conveyances. MPEDA’s focus is primarily on Market Promotion, Capture Fisheries, Culture Fisheries, Processing Infrastructure & Value addition, Quality Control, Research, and Development.
Functions of MPEDA:
- Registration of infrastructural facilities for seafood export business.
- Collection and dissemination of business information.
- Establishment of Indian marine products in overseas markets.
- Implementation of schemes vital to the industry by extending assistance for infrastructure development for better preservation and modernized processing following quality regime.
- Promotion of aquaculture for augmenting export production through hatchery development, new farm development, diversification of species and up gradation of technology
- Promotion of deep-sea fishing projects by test fishing, joint ventures and up gradation & installation of equipment to increase the efficiency of fishing.
- Market promotional activities and publicity.
- To carry out a survey of marine products, its raw material, fixing standards and specifications, training, regulating as well as to take all necessary steps for maintaining the quality of seafood that is marketed overseas.
- Impart adequate knowledge to fishermen, fish processing workers, aquaculture farmers and other stakeholders in the respective fields related to fisheries.
- Organize research and development for the aquaculture of aquatic species having export potential through Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Aquaculture (RGCA).
- Organize extension and awareness activities, training etc through Network for Fish Quality Management and Sustainable Fishing (NETFISH) & National Centre for Sustainable Aquaculture (NaCSA).
- To set rules for itself any matters required for protecting and augmenting the seafood exports from the country in the future.