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Shrimp Farming Industry Gradually Getting Better


Thailand is projecting a 10 to 20 percent rise in farmed shrimp output in 2017, according to Somsak Paneetatayasai, chair of the Thai Shrimp Association.


Addressing a visiting USA industry delegation in Bangkok, Somsak described Thailand’s growth plans for its shrimp sector as “gradual” but sustainable.  “We have been suffering from EMS now for four years,” Somsak said.  “At the beginning, we didn’t know where it was coming from, but now we know it’s from a bacteria and we are solving this problem with...good farming.  Stock cleaning and water cleaning will be central to the future farming of shrimp.  Seventy to 80 percent of the problem is now solved.”


According to Somsak, Thailand’s production fell from a high of 600,000/700,000 metric tons (the figures represent pond gate production before processing) to 300,000 tons in 2016.


Clawing back lost market share may be difficult.  Also addressing the USA delegation, Panisuan Jamnamwej, chairman of the Committee on Fisheries and Related Industries at the Thai Chamber of Commerce, pointed out that Thai shrimp used to have 30 to 40 percent share of the USA market, where imports account for 90 percent of consumption.  “Now Thailand and Ecuador are at 13 percent and Indonesia is at 19 percent,” Panisuan said.  “In the future something will have to give if Thailand is to recover its share.”


Nonetheless, Somsak thinks the USA will be a good market for Thai Shrimp.  Russia, on the other hand, has become less attractive as an export market because its imports have fallen back with the weakening of the national currency, the ruble.  He said, in the next few years, the biggest factor to watch for in the shrimp trade is China.  “Before they didn’t eat much shrimp; now they’re buying from all over the world.  If like the Americans, there won’t be enough supply in the world to meet this demand!”


Source:  Executive Editor, Cliff White (  Thai Shrimp Association: Supply Rebounding but Future Growth Will Be Gradual.  Gao Fu Mao = Mark Godfrey (SeafoodSource contributing editor reporting from Beijing, China).  September 28, 2017.


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