Six weeks before Lunar Tet Holiday, prices of freshwater species increase 1.5 – 2 times compared to the last two months, especially fishes, shrimps, crab and shellfish.
Farmers appear eager as traders come to buy their fishes at ponds with prices increasing by 10 – 20%. Particularly, snakehead is sold at 40,000 – 45,000 dong/kg, red tilapia at 32,000 – 35,000 dong/kg, tilapia at 40,000 – 50,000 dong/kg, frog at 35,000 – 38,000 dong/kg, farmed eel at 160,000 dong/kg (200g sized one at least), and natural eel at 220,000 dong/kg.
Farmer Trần Văn Khôi, managing three eel ponds in Thạch Phú commune, Cờ Đỏ district, Cần Thơ city, says he has 1,500 eels stocked in around 50 m2 ponds and after eight months they are sold at 160,000 dong/kg, making him earn 60 million dong of profit.
According to eel farmers in Cờ Đỏ district, eels are in high demand and prices are increasing constantly because natural fishes are in short supply. Thus, eel farming is a rather recent development with hundreds of households in Cờ Đỏ district applying non-mud eel farming system which helps farmers earn high profit.
Prices of natural species also increase at this time. Particularly, pila conica is sold at 50,000 – 65,000 dong/kg (up 30,000 dong/kg year-on-year), apple snail at 40,000 – 45,000 dong/kg (up 15,000 dong/kg), tiger moon at 20,000 – 25,000 dong/kg (up 5,000 – 8,000 dong/kg).
Farmer Trần Văn Sung in Mỹ Khánh commune, Phong Điền district, Cần Thơ city says he has one – hectare garden with shellfish and fishes being stocked in the pond. Despite having averagely 20kg shellfish sold each day, his farmed shellfish amount decreases by 30 – 40 percent due to sunny weather and less rain. Since shellfish and crabs are being a special food in Western area while natural products are in short supply, prices of these species are shooting up.
Price of crabs is 90,000 – 120,000 dong/kg, twice as much as the previous year. Claw of these crabs are sold at 240,000-300,000 dong/kg (up 25,000 – 30,000 dong/kg year-on-year). Farmers in Mekong Delta can earn hundreds dong from two or three kilogram of claws each day.