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December 4, 2008
 
Thai Shrimp Weekly: Shrimp prices rebound as weeklong airport siege ends (week ended Dec 3, 2008)           
 
An eFeedLink Exclusive       
 
 
Price summary
 
Shrimp prices rebounded by THB3-5 a kilogramme in wholesale trading in Mahachai one day after antigovernment protesters ended their siege of Bangkok airports that paralyzed for more than a week export of chilled shrimp, among many other things.
 
But the buying rates from the Thai Frozen Foods Association, which is dominated by shrimp exporters, still showed a decline of about THB2/kg across all sizes, an indication recovery in the export market won't come anytime soon.
 
Prices nosedived last week in Mahachai by as much as THB5/kg for each shrimp size at the start of the siege, which stopped all incoming and outgoing flights from Bangkok. The government has estimated damage throughout the entire supply chain at about THB22 billion. The shrimp sector, however, has yet to estimate the damage the airport closure had on the industry.
 
 
Market analysis
 
Most of the country's shrimp exports are frozen and shipped by sea. But chilled shrimp are sent by air to a few markets overseas. Before the airport siege, for example, Korea Air carried about 10 tonnes of chilled shrimp every night from a small group of Thai farmers to food markets in Busan and Seoul in the morning.
 
Korean traders sealed the deal with shrimp farmers in Suphan Buri, Chachoengsao, Ratchaburi and Pathum Thani six years ago to ensure Korean consumers get fresh products directly from producers.
 
During the weeklong occupation of the two airports - Suvarnabhumi and Don Meuang - tonnes of Seoul-bound chilled shrimp worth millions of baht had been rotting at cargo terminals in Bangkok.
 
Shrimp raisers involved in the Korean deal said they had been losing about THB2 million a day since the siege began. The loss may appear negligible compared to those of other sectors, said Vanich Sowanapreecha, owner of Kaset Somboon Farm Co., lead company for the group of about 50 shrimp farmers. But their biggest worry, he said, is that their customers might have shifted to other suppliers -- from Vietnam and Indonesia, for example - during the time Thai shrimp failed to make it to South Korea.
 

White shrimp prices (in Thai baht) at Thailand's main markets

Unit of Measure: Thai Bhat

Shrimp size

Mahachai seafood market

Thai frozen foods association
benchmark price

Bangkok markets

 

Nov 26

Dec 3

Nov 26

Dec 3

Nov 26

Dec 3

40 pcs/kg

- 

- 

125.60

126.60

- 

- 

50 pcs/kg

108

111

108.80

107.60

150-165

150-165

60 pcs/kg

97

100

99.50

97.80

140-150

140-150

70 pcs/kg

90

95

92.00

90.50

120-130

120-130

80 pcs/kg

85

88

88.40

84.70

110-120

110-120

90 pcs/kg

80

83

84.90

81.50

100-110

100-110

100 pcs/kg

78

75

- 

- 

90-100

90-100

Note: Farm-gate prices are THB10-15 lower than those at Mahachai market.
US$1=THB 35.735 (Dec 4)
 


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