According to VASEP, by early May 2021, the total export value of Pangasius to the EU market reached 39,4 million USD, declined 26,2% compared to the same period last year. In the past three years, the value of Pangasius import to the EU has remained at a negative growth.
In May, export value to Holland declined 21,7%, Spain declined 33%, Germany declined 50,8% and Belgium declined 38,2%.
In 2020, the EU seafood market was strongly affected by COVID-19, the distance measures in Italy, France, Germany, … had a significant impact on the circulation of goods within and outside the bloc. In early 2021, the EU retail market spiked up, increase 30% compared to last year but the food and service industry (restaurant, hotel, …) still remained low.
In addition to the high cost of sea transportation, the price of Pangasius in the EU remained stable, but many importers were hesitant to buy. In March 2021, the price of high-quality, unprocessed fillet Pangasius in Ho Chi Minh city is around 2,2 USD/kg and 3,3 USD/kg.
In Europe, the biggest market of Pangasius is Northern Europe and the customer care about safety, price and convenience. Most of the Pangasius product exports to the EU is frozen fillet catfish.
According to VASEP, Bangladesh and China are two competitors to Vietnamese Pangasius, although the volume of imports from these two markets still accounts for a small proportion, the import value is increasing. Especially in the Bangladesh market, due to supply chain issues, Bangladesh exporters are often unable to sell to high-end demanding markets like the retail sector where certification of traceability is usually required Originality, Quality and Sustainability. Instead, Bangladesh Pangasius is often located in the lower end of the foodservice market. A big advantage for Bangladesh is the benefit grom GSP+ regulation allow the exporters free from import tax. This makes Bangladesh Pangasius are quite competitive in price in the EU market.