Smt. Rajni Sekhari Sibal, IAS, Secretary, Department of Fisheries, Govt. of India visited ICAR-CIFT, Cochin on 4th April 2019, during her three days’ official visit to Cochin. The visit programme of Secretary, Dept. of Fisheries was considered as most important in the context of formation of new Department of Fisheries under the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare,Government of India as per Cabinet Secretariat's Gazette Notification vide F. No. 1/21/21/2018-Cab, dated 05.02.2019.
During the visit, Dr. Ravishankar, C.N., Director, ICAR-CIFT gave a brief report about the role and accomplishments of the institute in the harvest and post-harvest research in fisheries. He highlighted that the institute has been working since last six decades in a convergence mode with all the research and development organisations like different state fisheries departments, NIPHAT, CIFNET, MPEDA, NFDB, EIA, FSSAI etc. Highlighting the major achievements of ICAR-CIFT, Dr. Ravishankar stated that tremendous impact in the sector has been created by this institute in the recent past because of its unique recognition by FSSAI as the “National Referral and Reference Laboratory” for fish and fish products; invention of real-time,rapid detection kit commercially known as ‘CIFTest Kit” to detect adulteration of formaldehyde and ammonia in fresh fish;providing technical consultancy to Cochin Shipyard Limited fordesign and development of Long Liner cum Gillnetter for deep sea fishing;offering business incubation facilities for promoting start-ups in fisheriesand playing a crucial role in formulation of KMFRA guidelines and giving major inputs for preparing national blue economy policy.
Smt. Rajni Sekhari Sibal, IAS, Secretary, Department of Fisheries visited different NABL accredited laboratories of the institute, FSSAI lab, Net Mending Workshop, Engineering Workshop and BPD Unit and highly impressed with the technologies of the institute. She showed interest in organising exclusiveworkshops on harvesting and post-harvesting for wide scale dissemination of technologiesto the various fisheries stakeholders across the country. Later, the Secretary, Dept. of Fisheries, GOI had a discussion with members of Sea Food Exporter Association of Kerala to know the status of the seafood trade, its problems and opportunities. This meeting was also attended by Shri. K.S. Srinivas lAS, Chairman MPEDA; Shri Alex Ninan, President, Seafood Exporters Association of India (Kerala Region)along with more than 30 sea food exporters from Kerala.