THAILAND - The export value of Thai tuna and shrimp during the first seven months fell two per cent from the same period last year, but profit margin rose by seven to 10 per cent due to lower raw-material prices.
Exports to new markets helped offset problems with the European Union market, reports TheNation.
More shrimp totalling about 40,000 tonnes must be imported, as the Thai supply for the whole year is likely to be only 200,000 tonnes.
Chanintr Chalisarapong, president of the Thai Tuna Industry Association, said that the export value of Thai tuna and shrimp in the first seven months had dropped two per cent to about Bt50 billion.
However, in terms of quantity, there was a year-on-year increase of 8-10 per cent which, when coupled with a 30-per-cent fall in raw-material prices, resulted in a rise of 7-10 per cent in profit margin, which was good for the Thai tuna industry.
Poj Aramwattananont, president of the Thai Frozen Foods Association, said Thai shrimp still faced problems over Early Mortality Syndrome, which had caused a 42-per-cent decline in output from last year's level to about 200,000 tonnes.
Shrimp prices have fallen by as much as 30 per cent due to the low output, which resulted in fewer Thai orders from shrimp importers around the world, he said.
Thailand is likely to import 40,000 tonnes of shrimp from India, Viet Nam and Ecuador for local frozen-food factories to compensate for this year's output shortfall, he added.
TheFishSite News Desk