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Top shrimp exporter chief says Vietnam production costs too high

Vietnamese shrimp production costs are too high, making them less competitive in the global market, the chairman of leading seafood export company Minh Phu Seafood Corp has said.

Le Van Quang, speaking on June 23 at the 2023 Vietnam Shrimp Forum, said the costs of shrimp of the size that make up 50-60 to a kilogram are US$2.3-2.4 in Ecuador, $3.4-3.8 in India and $4.8-5 in Vietnam. They are the world’s three leading shrimp exporting countries.

The main reason for the high cost in Vietnam is its low success rate in shrimp farming, Quang said.

The success rate is less than 40% in Vietnam compared to over 90% in Ecuador and 60% in India.

To increase the rate, farmers should decrease density, experts said. In Ecuador, the farming density is very low at 30-50 shrimp per square meter.

According to Quang, when the cost in Vietnam falls to the same level as Ecuador’s, shrimp farmers will be guaranteed a profit of 30% and processing enterprises, 20%.

Tran Dinh Luan, director general of the Directorate of Fisheries, said people should farm shrimp with a more suitable density and form cooperatives to reduce costs.

He forecast shrimp prices to increase in the latter part of this year along with global demand.

According to the directorate, shrimp output this year is likely to be 1.08 million tons and exports will fetch $4.3 billion.

But the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Processors expects shrimp exports to be worth only $4 billion out of total seafood exports of $10 billion.

Last year shrimp exports had risen by 11% to $4.3 billion.

Source: VnExpress

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