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Asian Aquaculture Network

Komtas Kaewchaijaroenkit, Marketing and Communication Manager, for the Asian Aquaculture Network, reports:
We are creating and facilitating networking, technology transfer, information exchange and collaboration among our members and connecting them to a regional professional aquaculture network.  Moreover, we are providing updated information and news about aquaculture through our quarterly magazine and emails.  Furthermore, we will hold annual conferences and seminars on various subjects related to practical aquaculture operations and techniques.
Information: Komtas Kaewchaijaroenkit (Pubpab), Marketing and Communication Manager, Asian Aquaculture Network (AAN), 599/114 Ratchadapisek Road, Jatujak, Bangkok 10900, Thailand (phone +66-2-192-1788, fax +66-2-192-1787, email
Source: Email from Komtas Kaewchaijaroenkit to Shrimp News International on December 1, 2009.


ASEAN Shrimp Alliance to Set Up Certification Body

To help improve farming practices and overcome export obstacles for producers in member countries, the ASEAN Shrimp Alliance (ASA) plans to set up a regional certification body to verify the quality and standards of shrimp produced for export from the ASEAN region.  Some importing countries have imposed restrictive standards that protect consumers, but place heavy costs on the shrimp farmer, said Somying Piumsombun, Director-General of the Thai Fisheries Department.  She added that it will take some time to establish the certification body.  Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia have helped transform the region into the world’s shrimp basket, accounting for 80-85% of global shrimp production.  Currently, producers depend on international certification bodies.
Source: AQUA Culture AsiaPacific (Editor/Publisher, Zuridah Merican, email  News In Brief/ASEAN Certification for Shrimp.  Volume 5, Number 6, Page 6, November/December 2009.


In an effort to lower product tracking costs, Thailand’s National Innovation Agency (NIA) has released a report advocating nationwide adoption of RFID (radio frequency identification) tags to track the movement of Thailand’s shrimp crop from harvest to customer.  NIA wants the RFID tags to contain information on the origin of the shrimp, how long they have been traveling and what they were fed.
The project involves another system called C-Move, developed by DX Innovation and partially funded by NIA, that uses GPS technology to track vehicles when they are away from urban areas.
Source:  Thailand’s NIA Pushing for RFID Expansion.  September 22, 2009.

Shrimp Farmers Submit New Plan to Stabilize Prices

Shrimp farmers plan to submit a plan to the government that supports a new program to stabilize shrimp prices.  It would replace the current price support scheme that has caused huge financial burdens on the government and taxpayers for years.  Poj Aramwattananont, honorary adviser to the Thai Frozen Food Association, said the current program “deepened corruption” and did little to improve prices.
Under the new program, Poj said the government will set reference prices based on production costs, export prices, exchange rates and farmers’ profits.  If market prices fall below the reference price, the government will absorb the difference.
Source: Boletin Informativo (Ecuador’s Camara Nacional de Acuacultura).  Editor, Jorge Tejada (  Thai Shrimpers Back Price Stabilization Plan.  August 26, 2009.


Vannamei versus Monodon

Most small shrimp farms have abandoned Penaeus monodon in favor of P. vannamei, which now represents 90 percent of farmed shrimp production in Malaysia.
Some farmers would switch back to monodon if they had access to domesticated stocks and postlarvae from specific pathogen free or resistant broodstock.  They feel that there is a niche demand for large shrimp and for special markets like fish-out ponds that offer high prices.

Source: AQUA Culture AsiaPacific (Editor/Publisher, Zuridah Merican, email  Marine Shrimp/Market Options for Surplus Shrimp.  Zuridah Merican.  Volume 5, Number 5, Page 8, September/October 2009.



Dr. Shahridan Faiez, chief executive officer of Blue Archipelago, Bhd., the developer of i-SHARP, a 1,000-hectare shrimp farm that’s under development in the state of Terengganu, said the shrimp farm will have very little impact on the environment.  He said,  “We have taken a proactive stance.  We are the first aquaculture farm in the country to conduct a detailed environmental impact assessment for our project,” adding that 24% of the site, or 243 hectares, would be allocated to a “green lung” area and two hectares would be reserved for a River Terrapin Conservation Centre.
“We conducted extensive public consultation and workshops, and met with WWF-Malaysia, non-governmental organizations and key stakeholders.  We went [to the site] and interviewed families staying within a five kilometer radius from the project site,” Dr. Shahridan said.
He said Blue Archipelago was also working with the government to come up with an environmental monitoring program for i-SHARP.  “We are marketing our products to the international market, where there are many powerful environmental groups, especially in Europe.  We would be shooting ourselves in the foot if the project causes damage to the environment in any way,” he pointed out.
Dr. Shahridan estimates an annual revenue of $30 million from the project, which is slated to begin operations in June 2010.

Source: The Star Online.  Green Shrimp Farm.  Chew Wan Ying.  November 4, 2009.

Shrimp Export Revenues Forecast to Drop 20% in 2009

Tran Thien Hai, Chairman of the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP), forecasts that shrimp exports will generate some $2.6 billion in export revenues in 2009, a decrease of 20 percent from 2008.
The Russian shrimp market has been open to Vietnam since March 2009, but, according to VASEP, it isn’t an easy market.  To date, only 39 Vietnamese enterprises have been recognized as meeting Russian requirements.
Meanwhile, beginning in January 2010, Vietnamese seafood exporters face a new barrier in the European Union.  To get their products into the EU, they must show a certificate of their own legitimacy and documents on the origins of their products.

Source: Vietnam Net Bridge.  Seafood Exporter Unable to Net Satisfactory Export Business.  October 29, 2009.

Blue Archipelago—Digging Ponds as You Read This the state of Terengganu, a $57 million integrated shrimp project, which will begin operations at the end of 2010, is set to transform the remote fishing village of Setiu into the country’s largest integrated shrimp park.  Called “Integrated Shrimp Aquaculture Park”, or “i-SHARP”, it is expected to employ 1,300 local people who currently depend on fishing for a livelihood.
Dr. Shahridan Faiez, Chief Executive Officer of Blue Archipelago, Bhd., which will manage i-SHARP, said the project will be carried out in three phases at the company’s 1,200-hectare site on Terengganu’s central coast.  He said, “The Department of Environment has given its approval to Blue Archipelago to carry out the project, but has attached strict conditions to the company as not to pollute the environment and tamper with the ecology.  Land clearing is currently under progress to make way for the aquaculture park which will also house a laboratory and breeding center.  Between 10,000 and 12,000 tons of white shrimp and 5,000 tons of tiger shrimp will be produced annually, generating an income of more than $29 million.”
Blue Archipelago, Bhd., is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Khazanah Nasional, Bhd., which has been commissioned by the government to carry out this integrated shrimp project to spur economic activity in remote areas.  For the last 30 years, Khazanah Nasional has managed a shrimp park in the state of Kedah that churned out $5.7 million worth of shrimp annually.

Source:  RM200 Million Shrimp Park to Transform Setiu.  October 3, 2009.


Blue Archipelago and Red Lobster

In June 2010, Blue Archipelago, Bhd., a subsidiary of Khazanah Nasional, Bhd., plans to open a 1,000-hectare, $42.5 million shrimp farm in the state of Terengganu.  Chief executive officer Dr. Shahridan Faiez said the company, which already operates a 400-hectare shrimp farm in the state of Kedah, expects the new farm to contribute $28.3 million in revenue over the next three to four years.  Faiez said, “With the harvest from both farms we will be able to produce a minimum of 15,000 tons of white leg shrimp for the global market.”
Red Lobster: Bill Herzig, senior vice president of purchasing and supply chain innovation at Darden Restaurants Incorporated (USA), which owns Red Lobster, said the outlook for partnership with Blue Archipelago appeared positive!  “We are currently learning about the operations....  There are opportunities for future partnership but nothing much can be said now,” he added.

Source: Business Times.  Khazanah Unit to Operate Shrimp Farm.  August 25, 2009.

Rotating Shrimp with Rice in the Mekong Delta a blazing sun in Dong Thap Province, Vo Thi Nhieu and her husband are absorbed in reinforcing their levees to prepare their newly harvested rice field for the upcoming shrimp crop.  The work is harder than last year because they decided to expand the shrimp farm by half a hectare this year.  “We have adopted the practice of shrimp-rice farming for the last three years.  We used to cultivate only a one-hectare field.  The profits we made from it encouraged us to expand this year,” said Nhieu.
“Last year my family earned $3,300 from one hectare, with $2,500 of that coming from shrimp.  It has helped us lead a much easier life.  Besides buying appliances necessary for a modern family, like a television, refrigerator, video and even a computer, we can now afford to send our four children to high school and university.  Three years ago my family grew only rice, earning $335 or $392 per year.  My husband and I had to do other jobs, including hawking during the rest of the year to support the family.”
There has also been an unexpected windfall from farming shrimp.  Nhieu explains: “In the past, before we took up shrimp farming, we often had to use 30 sacks of fertilizers for our one hectare paddy.  But we now need only 12 because the field has become more fertile, thanks to the waste produced by the shrimp and other organic residue.  We have cut farming costs by more than half.”
Last year, seven provinces in the delta, including Tra Vinh, Bac Lieu, Soc Trang, Ca Mau, Ben Tre, Kien Giang and Long An adopted shrimp-rice farming on a combined 120,000 hectares, 23 percent of the Mekong Delta’s total arable land.
Dr. Do Minh Nhut, director of the Kien Giang Agricultural and Fishing Centre, said shrimp-rice farming is now the first option in his province, with farmers adopting the system on 70,000 hectares, the largest area in the region.  It is expected to expand to around 100,000 hectares in the coming years, he said.
For an example of rice/shrimp rotation in India, click here.
Source: Vietnam News Agency.  Shrimp-Rice Bring Hope to Delta.  Thien Ly.  October 18, 2009.

U.S. and Thai DOF joint Training Workshop on Shrimp Farm Good Aquaculture Practices

The Thai Department of Fisheries conducted a training workshop on shrimp farm auditing procedures for CoC/GAP along the system of ISO/IEC Guide 65 ISO 9001:2000 for Thai DOF officers. The Training Workshop was conducted for three batches, during April,21-25 and May, 12-16 and May, 26-30, 2008 at DOF Head Office in Bangkok.

Deputy Director General of Thai DOF, Mr. Niwat Suteemechaikul revealed the objectives of this training workshop, such as to increase the efficiency of concerned officers on shrimp farm auditing procedures for CoC/GAP. This will assure food safety for the complete cycle of culture shrimp production from farm to products which has been practiced since 2003. The code of practice and auditing procedure would be set along the line of importing countries’ laws and regulations. As additional information, the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperative, Thailand has planned to certify the Thai DOF as Certified Body: CB under the ISO/IEC Guide 65. The auditors should therefore have the qualifications along the regulation of ISO. Finally, this action plan would confirm that the standard certification of shrimp farms in Thailand is at world class standard.


AMAF endorsed ASEAN Shrimp Alliance (ASA)

The 29th Meeting of the ASEAN Ministers on Agriculture and Forestry (AMAF) was held in Bangkok, Thailand on 1 November 2007. H.E. Professor Dr. Thira Sutabutra, Minister of Agriculture and Cooperative of Thailand chaired the 29th AMAF with Dr. Cao Duc Phat, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development of Vietnam as the Vice-Chairman.

At this Meeting, the Ministers expressed satisfaction on the progress made in the ASEAN projects on food, agriculture fisheries and forestry. The establishment of the ASEAN Shrimp Alliance (ASA) was endorsed by the Ministers to enhance the ASEAN’s capability in responding to the challenges in the international trade of shrimp and shrimp products.

Fusarium Hits Spiny Lobsters

This paper reports on the first case of black gill disease (Fusarium solani, a fungi) in caged-cultured spiny lobsters (Panulirus ornatus).  F. solani is frequently isolated from American lobsters Homarus americanus, shrimp such as Penaeus japonicus and P. californiensis, and sharks.

Milky hemolymph syndrome, possibly caused a by Rickettsia-like bacteria, has been identified as the biggest disease problem for Panulirus farmers in Vietnam.

Source: Aquaculture Asia Magazine.  Editor, Simon Wilkinson.  Aquatic Animal Health/Black Gill Disease of Cage-Cultured Ornate Rock Lobster Panulirus Ornatus in Central Vietnam Caused by Fusarium Species.  Nha, V.V. (lvkhoa?, Research Institute for Aquaculture No.3, 33 Dang Tat Str., Nha Trang, Khanh Hoa, Vietnam), Hoa, D.T., and Khoa, L.V.  Volume 14, Number-4, Page-35.  October-December 2009.


Tiger Prices Increase in the Mekong Delta

Recently prices for giant tiger shrimp in Ca Mau Province increased by $0.65 to $1.14 per kilo, depending on size.  Currently, twenty-count-per-kilo whole tigers fetch $9.75 a kilo.  The main reason for the increase is that farmers are between crops right now and don’t have much to sell—and some farmers have shifted to finfish due to massive mortalities of farmed shrimp in 2009.  The shortage of farmed shrimp is expected to continue for several months.

Source: Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP) WebsiteCa Mau: Black Tiger Shrimp Sales Price Increase.  January 18, 2010.


Shrimp/Rice Rotation

Mr. Pham Van Tinh, Deputy Director of the National Agriculture Fisheries Extension Center, under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD), said MARD is boosting rice/shrimp rotation in the Mekong Delta.  Tinh said that shrimp farming throughout the year contributes to the problem of salinization, but that rotating rice and shrimp helps correct the problem.  It has been reported that rotating rice and shrimp produces a profit of over $2,000 per hectare per year.

Source: Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP) WebsiteMekong Delta: Development of Rice-Shrimp Model.  January 18, 2010.

Dumping Duties Reduced

Three Vietnamese firms that export frozen shrimp to the USA have had their dumping tax rates lowered to nearly zero percent by the USA Department of Commerce (DOC) for the period of February 1, 2007, to January 31, 2008, according to the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Processors (VASEP).  Minh Phu Corp, Camimex and Phuong Nam are the firms the DOC added to the list of companies with a zero tax rate.
Dumping rates of 1.66 percent for Minh Phu, 19.8 percent for Camimex and 5.6 percent for Phuong Nam were announced in March 2008, following the results of the third administrative review on shrimp.  The new rates are 0.43 percent for Minh Phu, 0.08 percent for Camimex and 0.21 percent for Phuong Nam.
Only Grobest, I-Mei Industrial, Co., Ltd., and Viet Hai Seafood, Co., Ltd., were given a zero tax rate after the third review.  Twenty-three firms received rates between 4.3 percent and 4.57 percent while the rest received a rate of 25.76 percent.
Companies bearing a tax rate below 0.5 percent will be considered as zero percent, said Le Van Quang, general director of Minh Phu.  Firms that show three consecutive rates of zero percent are exempt from taxes the following year.
Vietnam exported 15,191 tons of shrimp to the USA between January and June 2009, worth $147.3 million, an 18.3 percent rise in volume and 2.1 percent in value over the same period in 2008.
Following a fall in Vietnamese shrimp exports due to the global economic downturn, the second half of 2009 has shown a dramatic rise in exports.

Source: FIS United StatesShrimp Exporters Cleared of Dumping Duties.  Natalia Real (  September 17, 2009.


Uni-President Vietnam—Hatchery

Since the middle of 2008, Uni-President Vietnam has been supplying Penaeus vannamei postlarvae to farmers throughout Vietnam from its hatchery in Ninh Thuan Province.
Uni-President Vietnam invested $4 million in the hatchery to supply high quality specific pathogen free (SPF) white shrimp postlarvae to farmers in Vietnam.  Its current capacity is more than 120 million postlarvae a month.  To reduce transportation costs and to improve the efficiency of its distribution system, Uni-President plans to build hatcheries in several other provinces that will expand its production to 150 million postlarvae a month.
Uni-President’s biosecure hatchery management system was developed by several international experts from the Americas and Taiwan.  The management of the disease and PCR (polymerase chain reaction) laboratory was developed by Dr. Grace Lo, the chair of an OIE recognized laboratory at National Taiwan University.  Uni-President markets “UniLarva”, a commercial brand of SPF postlarvae produced in an eco-friendly biological system.
Information: Wu Ming-Hsun (

Source: AQUA Culture AsiaPacific (Editor/Publisher, Zuridah Merican, email  News/More Investment in Postlarvae Production.  Volume 5, Number 5, Page 5, September/October 2009.


Tracking Chemicals, Antibiotics and Product

In cooperation with the Danish International Development Agency (DANIDA), Vietnam’s Ministry of Agricultural and Rural Development says it will develop a system for tracking farmed shrimp.  The tracking system will include information on antibiotics, chemicals, sizes, types, colors and diseases.

Source: (an online, subscription-based, fisheries news service).  Vietnam’s New Seafood Tracking System Designed to Include Antibiotic and Chemical Use.  Ken Coons (phone 1-781-861-1441, email  Editor and Publisher, John Sackton (phone 1-781-861-1441, email  August 19, 2009.

Global Gen

Will Indonesia be able to fulfill its broodstock needs and market surplus broodstock around the world?  The private sector has been planning for this eventuality for several years.  Here’s an example of one company that is already producing SPF broodstock and postlarvae for Indonesia—and exporting it to China.
For the last several years, Global Gen, a private sector company, has been developing its own line of domestically produced SPF Penaeus vannamei broodstock—and a network of associated hatcheries to distribute postlarvae throughout the country.  Leonardo (“Bong”) Tiro, Director of Global Gen, said, “By July 2008, we had already developed the first generation broodstock and subsequently tested the postlarvae in commercial ponds”.
Global Gen produces an average of one billion nauplii a month and sells them through 17 associate hatcheries that produce postlarvae (PL-10) for sale to farmers.
Global Gen SPF shrimp are free from:
Whitespot syndrome virus
Taura syndrome virus
Yellowhead virus
Baculovirus penaeid
Penaeus monodon-type baculovirus
Infectious hypodermal and haematopoietic necrosis virus
Necrotizing hepatopancreatitis
Infectious myonecrosis
Hepatopancreatic parvovirus disease.
Global Gen also has alliances with three feed companies—CJ Feed, Matahari Sakti and Luxindo—that distribute its postlarvae to their feed clients.  The feed companies have a large customer base and provide farmers with technical support.  They like the idea of distributing high-quality postlarvae with their feed because quality postlarvae result in good production, and that makes the feed companies look good.
Bong says, “In Indonesia, we have been selling postlarvae at $3.50 per 1,000 since 2005, although our competitors have been reducing prices.  ...We only work with 45-gram males and 50-gram females that are eight months old.  We use the shrimp for only four months, compared to hatcheries that use broodstock for 7-12 months.  Each broodstock can spawn twice a week and ablation is sometimes used”.
In February 2009, Global Gen began to export broodstock to its subsidiary in Baguang, Guangdong Province, China, where it sells postlarvae for $26-$29 per 10,000 ($2.60 to $2.90 per 1,000).  Global

Government Encourages End of Shrimp
Broodstock Imports from USA

On November 29, 2009, the government announced another move that should strengthen the shrimp farming industry.  To reduce broodstock imports from Florida, USA, the Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries encouraged shrimp farmers to use domestically produced Penaeus vannamei broodstock whenever possible.  Made Nurdjana, the ministry’s director general of aquaculture and fisheries, said that domestically produced broodstock is similar in quality to imported broodstock—and more affordable.
“The shrimp fry from local broodstock has a better chance of survival because of its high resistance to disease, and it can adjust to local climate conditions,” Made said.
According to Ministry data, Indonesia imports about 320,000 P. vannamei broodstock a year for an industry that requires about 900,000 a year.  By using domestic broodstock, Made expects to reduce imports to about 100,000 in 2010.  “Using local broodstock is more profitable for shrimp growers since it reduces production cost,” Made said.  The price of a pair of Florida broodstock is $32 to $43; a pair of locally produced broodstock, $5.30 to $8.00.
Iwan Sutanto, chairman of Shrimp Club Indonesia, an association of shrimp farmers, had earlier said that using the local broodstock could reduce production costs, which have been averaging about $3.18 a kilogram for P. vannamei, by up $0.21 per kilogram.
Made emphasized that the ministry was not forbidding growers from importing broodstock.  “If companies consider imported broodstock to support their production process, the ministry will not prohibit them,” he said.  “The country is eventually looking to export vannamei broodstock, targeting an output of 1.3 million broodstock per year.  ...We expect to export...broodstock in 2011.”  Indonesia will call its new strain of domestically produced Penaeus vannamei broodstock “Nusantara I”.

Government Will Stop Imports of Shrimp
for Export to Other Countries

On November 28, 2009, Fadel Muhammad, Minister of Fisheries and Marine Resources, said the government planned to ban the importation of shrimp for export to other countries.  “The policy of allowing shrimp imports hurts businessmen and therefore it will be revoked,” he said.  “Domestic production must be increased and quality of the product must continue to be improved.”  Previously, when fishermen and farmers could not supply the demand for Indonesian shrimp, the country’s exporters would import shrimp, repackage it and market it abroad, a practice called “transshipping”.  The new import ban on shrimp should end that practice—and give a big boost to shrimp farming.
Currently, the government is encouraging intensive Penaeus vannamei farming.  In the next five years, the Ministry hopes to increase the production of farmed shrimp from 300,000–400,000 metric tons to 700,000 tons.

Indonesia Gets Serious About Shrimp Farming
In late November 2009, the Indonesian Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries made two announcements that will profoundly affect the country’s shrimp farming industry and could lead to a doubling of production over the next five years.



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