In the context of Covid-19 pandemic’s complicated development, seafood exports to the United States market grew impressively in recent months.
According to Le Hang Deputy Director of VASEP Training & Trade Promotion Center (VASEP.PRO), seafood exports to the US grew strongly in recent months. Specifically, Vietnam’s seafood export value to the US market recorded an increase of 36% in March compared to the same period in 2020. In April, the export turnover to the US even went up more strongly , up 64% reaching US$ 149 million
Thanks to the strong growth in the past two months, seafood exports to the US in the first four months of this year achieved US$483 million , increasing 28% over the same period last year. This is an impressive growth.
The key seafood products exported to the US experienced a strong growth , especially in April. Particularly, shrimp exports in April reached US$63.5 million, up 47%. Tra fish exports increased by 136% to US$30.4 million; tuna exports advanced 56% to US$ 31 million ; squid and octopus exports increased by 83%.
Shrimp is still the number one product in Vietnamese seafood exports to the US . In the first four months of this year, shrimp exports to the US reached US$ 198 million, up nearly 25% compared to the same period last year, accounting for 21% of Vietnam’s total shrimp export value and accounting for 41% of the total value of seafood exports to the US.
Tra fish exports to the US reached US$ 102 million, up 21% over the same period last year, accounting for 21% of the total Tra fish export value and 21% of the total value of seafood export to the US.
Information from the US shows that the US seafood imports from Vietnam is seeing a strong growth. According to NMFS’s statistics , in the first three months of 2021, the US seafood imports reached 743,700 tonnes, worth US$ 5.6 billion, up 7.2% in volume and 7.7% in value compared to the same period in 2020.
In which, Vietnam is the fifth and sixth largest seafood supplier to the US in terms of volume and value with 62,800 tonnes, worth US$ 341.04, up 24.6% in volume and 19.1% in value over the same period last year. The market share of Vietnamese seafood in the US in terms of volume increased from 7.3% in the first quarter of 2020 to 8.5% in the second quarter of the same year.
Positive trend in the coming months
According to VASEP, seafood consumption and imports in the US market will increase sharply in the second half of the year. VASEP’s forecast is based on the progress of Covid-19 vaccinations in the US and the fact that the US government’s COVID-19 Stimulus and Relief Measures help US economy grew at a 6.5% in the first quarter. Therefore, seafood saw increasing orders not only from the retail sector but also from the food services, restaurants and hotels.
Mrs. Le Hang said, by May 20,2021, all 50 states in the US reopened at different levels. Manufacturing plants resumed their operations as normal. Many big supermarkets and retailers no longer limited shoppers and beaches were open to tourists. These are signs of a soaring demand for seafood from now until the end of the year.
With the recovery of the economy, the US seafood imports are expected to increase 6% in volume, reaching 2.9 million tonnes and rising 9% in value to US$ 23.3 billion, higher than pre-Covid-19 pandemic levels. Demand for travelling and dining in restaurants would likely boom in the coming months after a long time of restrictions and social distancing. Therefore, the US will be the target market for seafood exporting countries such as Vietnam, India, Ecuador, Indonesia and Thailand in the coming time.
According to the Export-Import Agency under the Ministry of Industry and Trade, the US shows strong signs of recovery , increasing consumption seafood is driven by demand in the country even in the pandemic and the trend will continue . All these factors will boost Vietnamese seafood exports to this market.
However, when the Covid-19 pandemic is controlled step by step, the product structure will have certain changes. Hence, Vietnamese seafood enterprises need to proactively contact and develop plans to adapt to the constant changes in market trends in the coming time.