This is the best growth among the top 5 main shrimp import markets of Vietnam.
The Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VACEP) says that Vietnam’s shrimp export in the first 3 months of 2020 reached 628.6 million USD, slightly increasing by 1.8% compared to the same period in 2019, in which the shrimp export to the American market had the most satisfactory growth among the major import markets.
In the context in which export is delayed in several markets due to the effects of COVID-19, this is an encouraging growth for Vietnamese shrimp exporters. America is currently the second-best nation in importing Vietnamese shrimps.
In March, Vietnam’s shrimp export to America reached 41.3 million USD, increasing by 11.5% compared to the same period last year. The accumulated shrimp export of Vietnam to America in the first 3 months of 2020 reached 115.5 million USD, increasing by 18.2% compared to 2019. This is the best growth in the top 5 shrimp importing markets of Vietnam. COVID-19 spreading in America from March 2020 has delayed the commodity imported into this market.
The import demand has also decreased due to a sharp decline in consumption in the Food Service segment due to US government disease control measures. However, the shrimp consuming demand in the retail sector still increases to meet consumers’ demands. Enterprises exporting shrimp to other markets should focus on deep-processing products with added value such as the EZ easy peeled shrimp, etc. to suit the consumption needs of this segment.
India, which is the largest shrimp supplier to the US and also a major competitor of Vietnamese shrimp in the US market, is facing many difficulties due to the COVID-19 epidemic. A blockade to limit the outbreak of COVID in India, which began on March 23 and will last until May 3, has negatively affected the country's production as March was the peak month for breeding shrimp in the summer season.
Shrimp breeders in India are facing difficulties in both demands and transportation of shrimp seed, while their output is blocked, a shortage of shrimp breeders is present due to the lockdown, and the price of raw shrimp has plummeted. Due to the Blockade Order, some Indian processing plants are only able to operate with 50% of the number of workers. Therefore, Indian shrimp exports to the US in March 2020 are affected.
Accounting for 21% of the total shrimp export value of Vietnam, Japan has risen to be the largest shrimp import market of Vietnam in the first quarter of this year thanks to the strong growth of shrimp imports from Vietnam in February 2020 with an increase of 63% over the same period in 2019.
In the first quarter of this year, Vietnam's shrimp exports to Japan reached nearly 132 million USD, up 8.4% compared to the first quarter of 2019. Vietnam's shrimp exports to the EU, South Korea, and China in March this year still decreased respectively by 16%, 6.3%, and 6.4% compared to March last year due to the impact of the COVID-19 epidemic.
While the disease worldwide has not been controlled and there are not many positive signs, both farmers and businesses are still trying to overcome difficulties. Shrimp farmers are also in need of support to promptly control diseases in shrimp, especially white spot disease and acute hepatopancreatic necrosis because otherwise, it is likely to be a shortage of raw shrimp when the shrimp market recovers.
Currently, due to the reduction of demand for COVID-19, countries such as the EU, Australia, and South Korea, etc. have all applied measures to blockade or restrict travel, which affects the delivery, and accordingly, the raw shrimp prices tend to decrease in the first quarter of this year.
Farmers need to choose an appropriate shrimp harvest plan. If shrimp farming is not successful, farmers should harvest early to avoid losses. If the shrimp are in the small size stage and grow well, they should continue raising the shrimp to a larger size to sell at a higher price.
The situation of the disease is not yet known as to how long it will last. However, shrimp is in the essential food group at a reasonable price, so the demand will still be available in the world and the country shortly. The anti-epidemic situation of COVID-19 in China and South Korea is getting better and there will be more hope for farmers and processing plants when the output blockade is partly removed.
When major producing countries such as India and Ecuador are facing difficulties in production due to the epidemic and weather, Vietnam needs to ensure the supply of raw materials and production to catch up when the epidemic is under control, and the main shrimp importers should implement stimulus packages, etc. so that the demand for shrimp will increase, raising the prices.
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