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White-Leg Shrimp Favoured For Export

Crustaceans Economics +2 more

VIET NAM - Viet Nam has favourable conditions for farming white-leg shrimp and large export potential, an aquaculture official said.

Vu Dung, head of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development's Aquaculture Cultivation Department, told the Viet Nam News Agency that the country is favoured with low production costs and high productivity while global demand for small white-leg shrimp is high.

The cost of breeding the crustacean is currently around VN$30,000 a kilogramme, or just half that of black tiger shrimp.

In markets in the Cuu Long (Mekong) Delta, it now sells for VN$60,000-80,000 a kilogramme, up by VN$10,000-20,000 last month, the highest in the last two years.

Breeders earn a profit of VN$130-150 million per ha at these prices, according to the Viet Nam Association of Seafood Exporters and Processors (VASEP).

Although black tiger shrimp remains the key export item for the seafood sector, export of white-leg shrimp is expected to increase significantly, reaching US$500-600 million this year, due to its low price, experts said.

Last year the country exported more than 50,000 tonnes of white-leg shrimp for US$300 million, according to VASEP.

Japan, Viet Nam's largest shrimp importer, is likely to increase the proportion of white-leg shrimp in its total shrimp import to 18 per cent this year.

In the US, the world's largest white-leg shrimp importer, it accounts for 28 per cent of all shrimp import.

Viet Nam began to develop white-leg shrimp breeding on a large scale in 2008.