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3-Minute Market Insight

EP 577 | AIRED 02/21/2022

Pangasius Market Update: 2022 Outlook, USA Primary Market for Pangasius This Year

Feb 21st, 2022 --- This week we provide a Pangasius market update as 2021 year-end recaps made their way through headlines - so for this report we look ahead on what to expect for Pangasius in 2022.

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Although the Pangasius industry in Vietnam suffered through yet another year of unpredictable pandemic related difficulties, it wasn't all doom and gloom as Pangasius exports for 2021 are estimated at 1.61 billion billion dollars USD, which is actually up 8 percent compared to 2020.

The success Vietnam saw in 2021 (despite pandemic related difficulties) could be the result of demand for Pangasius returning back to it's normal levels from their three major export markets - that is USA, Europe, and China. (Other markets include Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Colombia, Russia and Egypt).

China is still the largest import market for Vietnamese Pangasius and by the end of 2021, the Chinese market accounted for 28 percent of Vietnam's Pangasius exports.

For 2022, the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (or VASEP), forecast that China may still maintain its position as the largest importer of Pangasius.

However, with that said, China remains to be a very unpredictable market affected by increasingly tight Zero Covid Policies and supply chain and production issues.

Pangasius Market Update: 2022 Outlook, USA Primary Market for Panagasius This Year

VASEP is also reporting that Chinese restaurants are no longer eager to buy Pangasius as they did before, but are switching to domestic fish options in China when market conditions are more favorable.

Weather affects China's farmed production, so Vietnamese pangasius becomes an attractive alternative when freshwater fish prices increase in China.

For the European market, VASEP does not see much growth (or any growth) in this market for 2022 due to what the price of Pangasius has risen to.

The stereotype that Panagaisus is a cheap whitefish makes it difficult for consumers to pay an increased price for Pangasius in Europe.

For the US market, VASEP is forecasting that exports of Pangasius to the US will continue to increase for 2022 where this market currently accounts for 22 percent of Vietnam's Pangasius exports.

Pangasius Market Update: 2022 Outlook, USA Primary Market for Panagasius This Year

2021 was considered a successful year for Pangasius in the US market as it maintained a high growth rate throughout the year while both quantity and export price increased.

In fact, the demand for Pangasius in the US market in the last 6 months of 2021 increased significantly even amidst a spike in pricing.

A contributing factor to the spike in demand is that US Catfish has been in short supply with pricing pushing up to $6-7/lb, which is about double that of Pangasius.

At the wholesale level, pricing surged around August/September 2021 where a 3-5oz IQF Pangasius Fillet went from $2.40/lb USD (on the east coast) up to over $3.00/lb.


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Currently on our TradexLIVE platform, a 2022 Production 3-5oz IQF Fillet is going for $3.10/lb USD FOB New Jersey.

Pangasius Market Update: 2022 Outlook, USA Primary Market for Panagasius This Year

Demand and sales of seafood in the US are projected to increase again in 2022, and as the foodservice sector is set to make a comeback this year, it will have to compete with grocery stores for supply.

Canada will continue to loosen COVID-19 travel restrictions which should lead to a flood of new tourism and demand on foodservice - and if Vietnam can keep up with production, Pangasius will be a great product for this program.

Pangasius Market Update: 2022 Outlook, USA Primary Market for Panagaius This Year

Our recommendation is to get your name on our shipments of Pangasius that are currently on the water and are destined to arrive around the end of March.

Talk to your Tradex Foods representative today about pricing on the West Coast and East Coast.

CHECK OUT OUR #SeaTheGood CAMPAIGN Which Seeks To Spotlight Something “Good” Happening In The Seafood World As Opposed To Unfortunate News. #SeaTheGood

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