Indian shrimp harvest curtailed by mortalities : May 6, 2015
Neil Ramsden – UNDERCURRENTNEWS
Landings of Indian farmed vannamei had been expected to pick up from the beginning of May, but diseases and hingh temperatures have prevented this from progressing as planned.
White spot and ‘white muscle’ disease are both restricting harvests, two sources said, while one also added that high temperatures were resulting in higher levels of dissolved oxygen in the water, killing some shrimp.
This latter problem is mainly affecting farms in Bhimvaram, Andhra Pradesh, said Chaipat Kunapiwatkul, business development manager with Siam Canadian Group, a Bangkok, Thailand-based frozen seafood supplier.
“Because of [the diseases and high temperatures], farmers are just harvesting those small sizes, to secure the crop,” he told Undercurrent News.
“The situation is going against all speculations that landings were supposed to be improving in early May.”
Vannamei prices for May 4 were steady on 30, 40 and 50 count – head on, shell on raw material – at INR 430, 350 and 300 ($6.74, $5.49 and $4.70) respectively.
However, for the smaller sizes, prices are slipping. 60 count fell in the week before May 4, to INR 250; 70 count was down from INR 250 to 230; and 80 count dipped from INR 230 to 210.
90 count was down from INR 210 to 200, and 100 count from INR 200 to 190.
Throughout April prices on all sizes have been falling. 30 count began April at around INR 450,while 100 count started at INR 230. All sizes in between have similarly fallen.
In Tamil Nadu, India’s second-largest shrimp farming region after Andhra Pradesh, white spot has “wiped out” some farms’ stocks, according to Durai Balasubramanian, secretary of the Pattukottai Shrimp Farmers Association, which has 4,000 members.
“I believe the landing situation won’t improve until August; stocking has been delayed due to disease and price uncertainty, and there are lots of empty ponds,” he told Undercurrent.
“I have visited farms which from around 35 days of stocking had experienced white muscle disease. There are lot of farmers who don’t have a solution for white muscle disease, which is causing rapid mortality.”
By this stage of 2014, 40 and 50 count shrimp had begun being harvested, said Balasubramanian. “But now there isn’t any material available.”
Previously, in March, he had warned these diseases hitting Indian farmers were a serious problem.
“These are all very serious in terms of production; once the farmer loses the culture due to failures he might not come back [to the business],” he said, at the time.
“It involves too much investment for vannamei, and India has too many small farmers engaged in the aqua sector, unlike corporations in other countries. Another important point to mention is that a lot of investments flew to the aqua sector when prices were higher; now they all disappear once the price drops,” said Balasubramanian.
Contact us : Siam Canadian Group Frozen Seafood Exporters for more formation: