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Dinh Vu


Last updated: Friday, May 25, 2018


Businesses Fated with Million-dollar Fish

Posted: Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Pangasius, an endemic species on the Mekong River, has long been recognised for the great value by the government. For decades, the downstream fish has made many Vietnamese companies well-known worldwide, including Vinh Hoan Corporation and IDI International Development and Investment Corporation - a member company of Sao Mai Group.

Asserting the calibre of a million-dollar fish
In nearly two decades, pangasius has created a strong boost for global catfish traders and enhanced Vietnam's increasing popularity in the world market. After rice and more than rice, pangasius of Vietnam has made a miracle for seafood exports and brought in huge foreign currency flows for the country. That made the world's top strategist, Professor Michael Porter of Harvard University, comment that, “Vietnam's competitive advantage is the difference based on agriculture. Pangasius can be considered an optimal advantage as many countries with similar climatic characteristics cannot be successfully propagated and exported it as Vietnam has done.” Although the export value is volatile due to objective reasons, it has never discouraged efforts and wills of seafood processors on the road to conquer the world market. “Difference in competitive advantage is tapping this valuable resource endemic only to the downstream of the Mekong River.”

According to statistics from the General Department of Vietnam Customs, total pangasius export turnover valued US$1.62 billion up in 2016 (as of December 15, 2016), up 0.8 per cent year on year. Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP) said that pangasius exports will continue to increase sharply in 2017. These persuasive figures vividly illustrate potential and continuous efforts of Vietnamese catfish exporters in Vietnam such as Vinh Hoan Corporation and Cuu Long Seafood Import-Export Joint Stock Company.

IDI brand has been present in more than 150 countries. In addition to improving product quality, the company has continuously expanded its farming area to 150 ha to seize over 90 per cent of inputs for processing facilities. Its increasing orders and impressive growth rate made IDI a Top 5 pangasius exporter in Vietnam.

Lifting up brand position from value-added segment
Needless to say, pangasius has brought in handsome foreign currencies for the country. But, it will be a great waste to produce only fish fillets. Increasing value-added chains of Vietnamese pangasius is a tough quiz that the entire agriculture needs to think a lot to find out the key. “This is a good time to invest in deep processing and value creation. And, whoever goes first will get a big chance,” said Mr Vo Hung Dung, Vice Chairman of the Vietnam Pangasius Association.

Capturing opportunities and finding out new directions for catfish to escape from post-crisis trouble, some companies have taken bold steps to make a progress such as Tien Giang Godaco Seafood Joint Stock Company with frozen pangasius fillet and stick fillets.

IDI is not only a successful fish fillet trader but also is known to be a pioneer in applying scientific and technological advances to deep processing to increase the value and complete a closed pangasius production and processing chain for human beings with a premium cooking coil branded Ranee. The cooking oil features outstanding properties, nutrition and affordable prices. It has unlocked a promising market for cooking oil made from fish and proves that the potential value of pangasius has been tapped effectively. With this wise approach, IDI can easily earn a hefty profit every year from refining catfish fat.

The flavour of the Mekong River has been brought worldwide by IDI in particular and Sao Mai Group in general. Such flavour is imbued with alluvial sediment in the country's southernmost delta, soaked with the sweat of fishermen, and crystallised from the gray matter of Sao Mai Group. The new product asserted the level of a multi-business group capable of grasping opportunities in an integrating economy and tapping the natural endowment on the Mekong River. Gold mines in the ground will be exhausted but gold mines on the Mekong River will never run out. Indeed, anyone involved in this field is truly right and visionary.

Tran Kiet

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