October 25, 2011
Mekong Delta's pangasius plants close due to material deficiency
A severe raw material scarcity caused by the ongoing floods have caused about 70% of pangasius fish plants in Vietnam's Mekong Delta to shut down, the newspaper reported.
In Dong Thap and An Giang provinces, which account for 60% of the total production of pangasius fish in the delta, floods have prevented farmers from feeding the fish, while their ponds have also been contaminated, the newspaper reported.
Duong Ngoc Minh, Deputy Chairman of the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Processors, said pangasius fish prices rose by VND5,000 (US$0.24) a kilogramme to VND27,500 (US$1.31) per kilogramme since early this month, but there is not enough supply.
Meanwhile, increased raw material prices have driven many businesses to losses as most exporters had contracted to sell the fish fillet at below US$3 a kilogramme, while the current price is over US$3.20 a kilogramme.
Small processors have to close down for now while bigger ones have had cut production by 50%, Minh said, adding the shortage will not ease up until next June.