August 1, 2008
Bangladesh's shrimp hatcheries have incurred losses of about BDT 100 crore this year due to a sharp decline in fry prices and poor demands from farmers.
Nearly all hatcheries have suffered losses from the fall in fry prices, said Main Uddin Admad, president of Shrimp Association of Bangladesh.
Main said the weakening demand was due to a drop in global shrimp prices, which had discouraged many shrimp farmers.
The higher price of rice worldwide has also lured many farmers to cultivate rice instead of shrimp, Main said, whose MK Hatchery has lost about BDT 1 crore.
Hatchery owners report the losses as they prepare to wrap up production this year, with fry production period usually in January to July.
Factory gate price of each fry fell to BDT 0.08-0.30 this year from BDT 0.30-0.90 in 2007.
Production cost has also increased due to the rise in prices for feed, fuel and energy, Main said.
Meanwhile, Bangladesh shrimp prices have declined in the global market amid fears of US economic recession and competition from vannamei shrimp. The fear of an EU ban on Bangladesh shrimp has also hurt prices in the domestic market.
Bangladesh's 58 shrimp hatcheries produce about 800-1000 crore of fry annually and the product is the country's second biggest export earner.
1 crore = 10 million