Value-added shrimp products
In 2011, Viet Nam’s shrimp export value hit US$2.396 billion, up from US$2 billion in 2010, accounting for the largest proportion of the country’s total seafood exports. Although black tiger prawn fell short of demand, vannamei prawn and those imported from other countries filled the supply gap. Therefore, the shrimp export still saw a yearon-year growth of 14 percent.
Black tiger exports hit US$1.43 billion, accounting for 60 percent of total shrimp export value, down 0.6 percent year-on-year while vannamei reached US$704 million, making up 29.3 percent, up 70 percent against the last year.
Juvenile and disease problems ate away black tiger quality and drove the price up in 2011. For example, tiger shrimp count 35-40 animals per kilo in Ca Mau, Soc Trang constantly stood above VND200,000/kg. Meanwhile, vannamei exports showed a more positive trend as the world’s demand for cheap small-sized shrimp was high. Moreover, vannamei has strong disease-resistance so its supply is stable. Many producers shifted from black tiger to vannamei or bought both varieties to meet the market demand. The move led to a sharp increase in vannamei price in 2011. In December 2011, selling price of vannamei count 100 in Phu Yen was VND105,900/kg, up 30 percent (VND25,000) year on year. Also, in Ca Mau, the price surged to VND100,000/kg, a 25 percent increase from the early year.
Quoc Viet Seafoodʼs farming area. Photo: Nguyen Khai
Vietnamese shrimp further penetrated in a number of markets besides the giant US, Japan, and EU. In 2011, these three markets collectively accounted for 66 percent of Viet Nam’s total shrimp export value, down from the 71 percent in 2010. Meanwhile, exports to other markets experienced the strong increase, i.e. Russia 124 percent, ASEAN 54.7 percent, and Korea 23 percent...
The export price of most shrimp varieties increased. The average monthly export price in 2011 hit US$9.2-9.9/kg, up 12-18 percent or even 28 percent against the previous year. The price of value-added shrimp grew faster than that of pre-processed products.
The proportion of white-leg shrimp in the country's shrimp export value increased to 29.3 per cent in 2011, up from 26 percent in 2010. The ratio of processed shrimp showed an upward trend, accounting for 28 percent in 2011 compared to 23 percent in 2010. Meanwhile, the percentage of live/fresh/frozen shrimp decreased from 76 percent to 70 percent.
In 2011, Vietnamese shrimp was exported to 91 markets world-wide. Japan represented 25 percent of Viet Nam’s total shrimp export value, becoming the largest importer. EU maintained a high and steady growth rate. Top 10 destinations of Vietnamese shrimp were Japan, US, Hong Kong, China, Korea, German, Canada, Australia, Taiwan, and UK, which altogether made up 82 percent of the shrimp export value of Viet Nam.
In 2011, shrimp export to Japan amounted to US$607.2 million, increasing 4.5 per cent against an earlier year. Since the earthquake and tsunami disasters in Japan in March 2011, Vietnamese shrimp exported to this country decreased significantly. After five straight months of steep declines, the figure rebound in August 2011.
In June, Japan started to test enrofloxacin residue on 100 percent of Viet Nam’s shrimp consignments to this market. This move also impaired the shrimp imports to Japan.
Japan shrimp imports from Viet Nam, Thailand and Indonesia are down respectively 22.2 percent, 3.7 percent and 4.1 percent, but that from India and China picked up 4.7 percent and 23.3 percent. Thailand, Viet Nam, Indonesia, India and China were Japan’ top five shrimp suppliers in 2011
In 2011, Viet Nam’s shrimp exports to the US hit US$558.5 million, up 1 percent year-on-year.
In the first six months, the market experienced two-digit growth but plummeted in the second half of year. There is no sign of recovery since the buyers’ inventory is still very high. In 2011, Viet Nam lost its upper hand in shipping large-sized shrimp to the US. Data from U.S. Census Bureau showed that import of U/15 shrimp into the country declined by 3.3 percent in the first 10 months of 2011.
In 2011, Thailand remained the largest shrimp exporter to the US although its supply was affected by the flood. In the first 10 months, Thailand exported 149,757 MT of shrimp to this market, down 7 percent year-on-year (160,707 MT). US’s shrimp import from India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mexico and Ecuador skyrocketed by respectively 77 percent, 14.4 percent, 18.8 percent, 25.5 percent, and 11 percent.
In 2011, Viet Nam earned US$412.8 million from shipping shrimp to EU, up 20 percent year-on-year. EU was the only market enjoying a growth for 11 months in a row last year. However, the shrimp imports to this market staged a drop of 11 percent in December as the imports to Belgium dwindled by 35.5 percent.
German, UK, Belgium, Netherlands, Spain were top five shrimp importers in EU, accounting for 81 percent of the total import value of this region.
There is a trend that EU members increased imports from each other as market share of Belgium, Spain, and Netherlands reflected a soar while that from Ecuador, India, Bangladesh, Thailand and Madagascar plunged.
China & Hong Kong
Shrimp export to China and Hong Kong in 2011 totaled US$224 million, up 54 percent against a year back. China’s shrimp imports from Viet Nam maintained a high growth rate in the recent years. This market constantly registered 2-3 digit increase in the first months of 2011.
Last year, Vietnamese processors and exporters had to compete with Chinese traders for raw material right on their backyard. This showed an unstable raw shrimp supply within China, the world’s third largest shrimp exporter but also one of the top 15 shrimp importers in the world. China mainly bought frozen shell-on shrimp small-sized (accounting for 48 percent of import value) and large-sized (33 percent).
Besides Asia countries, China has increased imports from other sources such as Ecuador and Canada. In 2011, China imported shrimp from 47 countries world-wide. Its top five shrimp suppliers were Canada, Ecuador, Thailand, India and Greenland.
In the first ten months of 2011, China exported 221,664 MT of shrimp (including 43 percent of processed shrimp and 57 percent of HOSO and HLSO shrimp), worth over US$1.58 billion, up 15 percent in volume but down 38 percent in FOB value year-on-year.
Korea is the ninth largest importer of frozen shrimp in the world and the fifth biggest individual shrimp importer of Viet Nam in 2011. It bought US$157.6 million of shrimp from Viet Nam last year, up 23 percent over 2010. The export volume to Korea has constantly enjoyed an upward trend. Frozen raw shrimp accounted for 77 percent of the country’s imports and the remainder was processed shrimp.
Vietnamese shrimp has a dominant position in the Korean market. Before 2006, Vietnam’s shrimp export value to this market used to be lower than Thailand and China. However, since 2007, it surpassed 25 countries and territories to become Korean’s the No.1 shrimp supplier, accounting for 37 percent of the market share, followed by Thailand, Malaysia and China with 17 percent each. Viet Nam’s processed shrimp import into Korea made up 42 percent, followed by China and Thailand.
Opportunities and challenges in 2012
Viet Nam's shrimp exporters will continue to face difficulties in terms of raw materials, markets and antibiotic residues in 2012, according to the industry’s insiders.
Raw material supply
Vannamei shrimp is developing to its fullest potential in Viet Nam. It will account for a larger proportion in the country's shrimp exports. The domestic shrimp supply is forecasted to be more stable in 2012 as the lessons learned from 2011 help the industry to take better control of the diseases.
A source from Thailand forecast the this giant seafood supplier will face shortfall of the large-sized shrimp supply in early 2012, due to impact of severe flooding last year in this country.
It is expected that shrimp consumption in major markets namely Japan, US, China, South Korea will continue to be high in 2012 with the first two looking to import more value-added products and less raw shrimp.
Viet Nam's shrimp exporters will face strengthened inspection in Japan, especially for trifluralin and enrofloxacin. The shrimp consignments found with these prohibited residues by Japan have not decreased.
They will also struggle with the price competition from regional countries such as Indonesia, India and Thailand. Selling price of Vietnamese shrimp has been 15-20 percent higher than that of India and Indonesia.
The economic situation in many European countries is still uncertain, so shrimp imports to this market are forecasted not to be positive in 2012.
Shrimp exports to China and South Korea will be boosted this year. Local shrimp exporters are likely to increase large-sized shrimp exports to the US to compensate for the shortage of shrimp supply from Thailand. Besides, they are expected to export more value-added shrimp to meet the market demand.
The lack of capital and high inspection costs will also be major obstacles for shrimp exports in 2012.
This year, Viet Nam’s shrimp export value is forecast to hit US$2.5 billion, contributing to the total seafood target of US$6.5 billion.
With the policy supports from state management agencies, the seafood and shrimp exporters are taking drastical measures to reduce cost and increase their competitiveness to achieve the export goals. (A report of VASEP’s Shrimp Committee).
By Truong Dinh Hoe
Complied by Hang Van