Lower raw pangasius price partly due to weak dollar

Last week, raw pangasius price in some provinces in Vietnam showed fluctuations, even harvest crop has not come yet. Therefore, some pangasius farmers reduced the price. The weak dollar and  lower pangasius by-product price made raw pangasius price paid by processors decline in the past time

Since the end of third week in May, 2011, the price of premium raw pangasius has fluctuated in the range of VND27,000 – 28,000 per kilogram, down compared to the peak of VND29,000 per kilogram reached in the early May. However, the price has no variations on that in the first and  early second quarter this year.

According to many local processors, the weak dollar and lower price of pangasius by-product forced them to reduce the purchasing price of raw pangasius. Besides, due to the concern on fish weight over size for selling, some farmers bartered pangasius away.
At the beginning of May, when pangasius price reached the peak of VND29,000 per kilogram, some pangasius farmers expected the price to keep rising, so they didn’t want to sell their fish and waited for a higher price. But the market suddenly reversed, the pangasius price was at the peak for a short time and returned to around VND27,000 – 28,000 per kilogram, Mr. Le Chi Binh, Vice Chairman of An Giang Fishery Association said. Currently domestic raw pangasius volume is enough for processing for export, he said.
The drop in raw pangasius price took not only many pangasius farmers but also enterprises to surprise. The pangasius price fell instead of going to VND30,000 per kilogram as expectation made them confused. Some famers, who kept fish in ponds for long time with the hope of higher price, decided to sell fish with the low price due to their fish was over size for processing to export. Some other farmers sold fish with the weight of 700 – 800 gramme, under size of processing. This made contribution to the falling price to VND27,000 – 28,000 per kilogram, Mr. Binh continued.
One reason for the falling raw pangasius price in early May is the drop of inter-bank dollar exchange rate, down VND500 compared to the rate at the time of the peak raw pangasius price, Mr. Duong Viet Thang, Deputy Director of SouthVina explained.
Besides, another reason for lower price of raw pangasius is the falling of pangasius by-product price because fishmeal price decreases. Pangasius by-products such as fish skin, bone, head are now accounting for 70 percent of raw pangasius weight, affecting raw material buying price. When pangasius price was at the peak, average by-product selling price reached VND7,400 per kilogram and falls to VND6,800 per kilogram now. This creates a great pressure on pangasius processors because  thousand tons of pangasius are processed daily.
Currently, local pangasius processors are at risk of loss because their partners are requiring to lessen pangasius price due to the falling raw pangasius price. In fact, though the raw pangasius price falls, the value of pangasius does not fall. The drop in the raw pangasius price is now only temporary because domestic raw pangasius volume is only enough for processing, Mr. Binh expressed.
Source: Pangasius Vietnam
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