Opportunities in Africa for Latin American seafood
By Roland Wiefels
INFOPESCA has extensive experience working in Africa with various missions to the continent in recent years, in Morocco, Mozambique, Angola and Tanzania, among others. It also has studies on the fisheries and aquaculture sector for each of the 53 countries in this vast continent whose population recently surpassed the 1 billion people.
With an apparent consumption of 9.9 million tonnes of seafood in 2010, 1 billion African consumers disbursed a total estimated of USD 49,500 million for the purchase of these products with their retailers. African fish consumption follows the same trend of growth that the rest of the world, including Latin America. Meanwhile, its population growth combined with a growing per capita consumption makes this growth particularly important in Africa. Uruguay is a major supplier of fish products to Africa, and Brazil invests in fisheries and aquaculture cooperation with African countries.
The INFO Network is an effective instrument of rapprochement between Latin America and Africa to rapidly develop their relationships and their trade in the fisheries and aquaculture sector. Latin American countries and their companies have at their disposal INFOPESCA on the
west side of the Atlantic and, on its eastern side, INFOSAMAK, located in Casablanca, for countries north of the Sahara and INFOPECHE, located in Abidjan, for countries south of the Sahara.
Geography, production and marketing of seafood
By Roland Wiefels
Production and market. Or market and production? The order of placement of these two terms is not innocent. By placing “production” first we have in mind biological, technological, environmental and production costs aspects. Then, human and social aspects appear, making up the market. At this frequent point of view we see that market issues are put into a backburner, even in project documents.
The big Brazilian markets studied by INFOPESCA have an annual per capita consumption of 14.05 kg in the Federal District, 15.01 kg in the metropolitan area of São Paulo and 18.05 kg in the metropolitan area of Rio de Janeiro. SAFRA, the government’s Fishery and Aquaculture Plan, aims to reach a total production of 2 million tonnes of fish in 2014.
Seafood transport in Brazil is done mainly by road and its cost directly influences the profitability of the producer. For example, producing tambaqui (or other native species) in the northerndam of Tocantins State is optimal because of its water quality, but transporting this production to the markets may involve a long journey.
The estimated cost of transport to major markets is R$ 0.73/kg (about 2,200 km). By comparison, transporting frozen product from China to Brazil (21,000 Km) would cost R$0.61/kg. Aquaculture engineers always aim to reduce production costs, and in the same way it is possible to make savings on distribution and trading costs. With the accelerated aquaculture development nowadays, it is essential to question ourselves if we choose the right place of production, taking into account these variables.
Caviar and substitutes
By Thaís Moron Machado
The caviar consists on eggs of freshly caught sturgeon, preserved with salt, subject to pasteurization or not. It is a culinary specialty of high added value.
The sturgeon belongs to the Acipenseridae family, and includes 26 species distributed in four genera.
International websites offer caviar at prices ranging from USD 80.00 to USD 275.00 (28g packing).
The eggs of the rainbow trout, Oncorhynchus mykiss, are considered caviar substitutes with large market potential. A scientific work "Development and economic viability of a caviar substitute, rainbow trout eggs", unpublished in Brazil, was conducted by the São Paulo's Agency for Agribusiness Technology (APTA), and showed that the market has great
potential for this substitute, which is an excellent product from a gastronomic point of view and economically viable.
Aquatic biodiversity for sustainable food diets: the role of food and aquatic ecosystems in food security and nutrition
Seafood contributes significantly to improve and diversify diet and promotes nutritional wellbeing of people. However, fishery resources have been mismanaged for decades and actually are fully exploited, or even overexploited.
The growing demand for seafood will be met by reducing post harvest losses and allocating more fish for direct human consumption, primarily with the increased production from aquaculture. Farmers are optimistic about producing much more quantity of fish.
However, the availability of fishmeal and fish oil, main feed ingredients in aquaculture, with current technology, put a limit to this development. Any growth in aquaculture, as experienced in recent decades, is therefore more likely to be related to the sustained supply of inland feed ingredients.
This has led to macro-agreements and guide lines in order to ensure both human and animal health, the protection of biodiversity and the promotion of environmental sustainability.
A greater awareness about the sustainability of resources in recent years has emerged among consumers in the northern hemisphere, and the fishing industry has responded by developing certification and labeling systems that warrant sustainability of products.