Chinese seafood: production and consumption predictions released
China’s aquaculture production is forecast to start stagnating due to factors including the introduction of more stringent environmental legislation, according to a new report by Rabobank.
The report, China’s changing tides: shifting consumption of trade position of Chinese seafood, is written by three of the bank’s seafood analysts – Gorjan Nikolik, Beyhan de Jong and Chenjun Pan – and notes how the world’s largest seafood producer is losing competitiveness both domestically and in terms of seafood exports. As a result, the report predicts that China’s current $10 billion seafood surplus is likely to decrease over the next decade.
China consumes 37 percent of the world’s seafood
In terms of aquaculture, disease, pollution and an increasing shortage of cheap labour are all highlighted in the report as having a negative impact. Indeed, the country’s ageing population is resulting in the workforce shrinking by 3-4 million people a year, which is helping to drive up wages and increase production costs. Meanwhile, the report continues, outbreaks of disease are causing China’s shrimp industry to stagnate or even decline. Combatting disease is also increasing the cost of production, while the need for the use of antibiotics, for example, is denting consumer confidence in China-produced shrimp.
Moreover, states the report, China’s recent water pollution crisis has led to a tightening of environmental legislation and a restriction on the areas that can be used for aquaculture and the closure of a number of fish farms.
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