Friday, April 18, 2014
The aquaculture sector in Bangladesh began with small scale extensive culture systems such as rice-cum-fish, livestock-cum-fish and earthen ponds in the early 1970s. The rapid growth the sector has achieved during the last two decades has been a direct result of the sector diversifying its farming practices and adapting to the production of exportable species at increased levels of intensification.
The culture systems are diversified according to national geographical and climatic conditions, the northern region is dominated by freshwater fish ponds, rice-cum-fish and marine cage culture; the central regions concentrate on the intensive culture of giant tiger prawn and the marine cage culture of fin fish or lobster and the southern part of the country has the most diversified farming activities that include pond, fence and cage culture of catfish as well as several indigenous species, various intensification levels of giant tiger prawn culture and integrated culture such as rice-cum-fish, rice-cum-prawn and mangrove-cum-aquaculture.
The aquaculture sector began commercial production for export in the early 1980s with the farming of the giant tiger prawn (Penaeus monodon ) initially. A major motive towards expansion of aquaculture in Bangladesh was provided by the sharp increase experienced in the volume of aquaculture product being exported. A remarkable achievement of the aquaculture sector has been the increase in total production to 1 150 100 tonnes from a farmed area of 902 900 hectares and which has contributed over 60 percent of the US$ 2.397 billion in export turnover earned from the fisheries sector 2004.
The farming of giant tiger prawn (Penaeus monodon ) and catfish (cá tra - Pangasius hypophthalmus and cá basa - Pangasius bocourti ) are the most developed sectors reaching production levels of 290 000 tonnes and 315 000 tonnes respectively in 2004. Other species such as spiny lobster (Panulirus spp.), groupers (Epinephelus spp.), bivalves (Meretrix lyrata and Anadara granosa ), tilapia, Chinese carps, Indian carps, climbing perch (Anabas testudineus ) and Indonesian snakehead (Channa micropeltes ), are also produced to differing levels of intensification and extent.
The aquaculture sector in Bangladesh has great potential to continue its current growth; however, there are a number of challenges ahead for the sustainable growth of the sector.
Saturday, February 1, 2014
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Sunday, January 26, 2014
|Catfish, mostly farming in Bangladesh.|
The real answer is that the tiny country on the Indian Subcontinent has plenty to do with it. In a logical world, Mississippi catfish growers say, whatever is going on in Bangladesh would have nothing to do with catfish farming in Mississippi. After all, the insect-fed African catfish Bangladesh’s peasant farmers grow in mud holes around their homesteads are hardly the same as the grain fed channel catfish grown in thousands of acres of man-made, highly regulated aqua ponds across the Delta.
Different they may be, but the U.S. government sees them as quite comparable when determining whether cheap imported catfish is undercutting struggling catfish farmers in Mississippi, Arkansas, Alabama and Louisiana.
Mid South catfish producers do not actually compete with Bangladesh’s catfish growers. They do, however, compete with Vietnam’s producers.
Vietnam being a communist, or “nonmarket,” country whose catfish industry is heavily subsidized by the central government, the U.S. government can’t put a monetary value on how subsidies from Hanoi influence the cost of a pound of Vietnamese catfish fillets sold in the United States. Consequently, a “surrogate” country is needed on which to base a fair market value. The fair market value is key because an exporter found to be pricing a product below that value could be deemed guilty of dumping and thus subject to extra import duties. Settling on a fair market value is where Bangladesh comes in, and the frustration of Mississippi’s producers begins.
Bangladesh catfish, the African variety known as Clarias gariepinus, sell for around 42 cents to 43 cents a pound, a price that does not reflect any subsidies from the Bangladesh government . Vietnamese catfish fillets, or pangasius, go for around $1.50 a pound in U.S. markets, while catfish made in America wholesale at around $3.90 to $4 a pound.
Accordingly, in deciding whether the Vietnamese are dumping their government-subsidized catfish, the U.S. Commerce Department looks at the price Bangladesh exporters are getting. Selling for $1.50 a pound isn’t dumping – not when Commerce designates 42 cents to 43 cents as a fair market rate based on the wholesale price for Bangladesh’s African catfish product.