November 29, 2008
International shrimp prices, which were already depressed before the financial crisis, are likely to weaken further as the slowing economy and credit crunch kicks in, according to the FAO.
Import demand from the EU, the US and Japan are expected to slow down, which would further pressurise prices.
The EU, which was usually a resilient market, has begun to show signs of weakness, as imports fell 10 percent in the first half of 2008 to 337,600 tonnes.
While France increased its purchases, other member states such as Italy and Spain registered massive decreases, said the Seafood Exporters Association of India.
Shrimp producers around the world are reducing output due to falling demand and low prices.
While India has just started the cultivation of vannamei shrimp, countries such as Thailand are reducing on vannamei production and shifting to black tiger farming.
Farmers in Thailand said black tiger shrimp farming is becoming more profitable, compared to vannamei shrimp farming that is becoming unprofitable under present circumstances.
Prospects for fish production in 2009 are also looking bleak as weakening demand is expected to force down prices.