August 12, 2014
Vietnam plans for sustainable supply to increase pangasius exports to EU
Vietnam is planning for a sustainable supply chain of pangasius, with an aim to increase such exports to the EU, Fish Information & Services reports.
"Pangasius or tra fish has been exported to 150 countries and territories with a total revenue of more than US$1.8 billion yearly, of which the EU accounts for 21% of the total export value," said the general secretary of Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP), Truong Dinh Hoe.
According to VASEP, these exports suffered a 9% decline in the first six months of 2014 compared to the same period last year. The organisation blames the drop in export value to the EU on the bloc's economic slump in recent years, leading to lower consumption.
In the framework of Vietnam Pangasius Forum, Vietfish 2014 with the theme "The sustainable growth for pangasius at European market," the Import-Export Management Bureau under the Ministry of Industry and Trade's deputy chief, Duong Phuong Thao, considered the reason was a number of challenges facing the industry, such as a weak financial capacity and outdated processing technology.
"The EU is a large market for white fish, but many orders from the EU were missing due to a small production scale, financial constraints and low labour productivity of Vietnamese enterprises," Thao said. The official recommends that Vietnam improves communication activities and promote Vietnamese pangasius in the EU, while also getting enterprises and associations to organise distribution activities in the EU.
She also proposed that the country determines the export price for pangasius via public auctions with buyers, and attempts to establish a national brand for the product.
Meanwhile, Pham Anh Tuan, the deputy general director of the Fishery Department under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, stressed that the government has developed a master plan for production and processing, and has invested in research and technology, and infrastructure such as fish stock and quality management centers.
Vietnam Cleaner Production Centre's Le Xuan Thinh, explained that the organisation, in cooperation with WWF Austria, WWF Vietnam and VASEP, is helping the pangasius industry to implement social, environmental, food safety and economic responsibility along the entire supply chain. The project's objective is that, by 2017, at least 70% of targeted production and processing enterprises, and 30% of feed producers, hatcheries and small independent production businesses are actively engaged in Cleaner Production.