2023 Shrimp Summit: growth through efficiency and sustainability

World leaders in the sector will meet in Vietnam to advance current challenges in shrimp farming not only in Asia, but around the world.
Aerial view of the high-technology white shrimp farm with an aerator pump in front of Loc An, Ba Ria Vung Tau, Vietnam. Photo: Adobe Stock.
Aerial view of the high-technology white shrimp farm with an aerator pump in front of Loc An, Ba Ria Vung Tau, Vietnam. Photo: Adobe Stock.

Production efficiency, sustainability and climate change, but also market demand and producer livelihoods are some of the challenges currently facing the global shrimp farming industry. Finding solutions to them is the idea around which the 2023 Shrimp Summit is organized, which will take place in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, from July 24-26. Growth, yes, but through efficiency and sustainability.

"This is an opportunity to reshape the shrimp farming sector with improved efficiency and sustainability and to begin collective plans to expand market demand," said Dr. George Chamberlain, President of The Center for Responsible Seafood (TCRS), the main hoster entity of the event. Together with TCRS, the 2023 Shrimp Summit is co-hosted by the Global Seafood Alliance (GSA), the Vietnam Department of Fisheries, the Vietnam Fisheries Society (VINAFIS), and the International Collaborating Centre for Aquaculture and Fisheries Sustainability (ICAFIS).

Shrimp farming business at a crossroads in Asia

"With the shrimp farming business at a crossroads, a summit in Vietnam is a timely event," the organizers pointed out. The truth is that just this week we learned that the Vietnamese shrimp industry is at risk of not meeting its export targets for this year after its shrimp exports fell by 35% in the first 5 months of the year. Asia accounts for two-thirds of world shrimp production, but growth in Vietnam, China, India, Thailand, and Indonesia is leveling off or contracting. Measures such as maintaining antidumping duties on frozen shrimp from China, India, Thailand, and Vietnam in the U.S. are not helping to improve the situation.

While this is happening, Ecuador is expected to account for most of the 7% global growth in shrimp production by 2023. As César Molina, General Manager of Skretting AI Guayas Research Station in the country, pointed out in an exclusive interview with WeAreAquaculture last November, the future of the shrimp industry in Ecuador looks promising. Therefore, the organizers are confident that "by sharing expertise, developing a common understanding of issues, and working toward consensus solutions, the 2023 Shrimp Summit will foster discussions where new paradigms are expected to emerge for productivity, improved livelihoods, and achievement of a higher level of sustainability, especially regarding climate change."

Collaboration and knowledge sharing to learn from each other is the way this event is organized and representatives of the shrimp farming value chain from all over the world are invited to participate. Retailers, importers, exporters, processors, feed companies, producers, NGOs, and government representatives are all welcome to contribute their ideas and participate in person or virtually at the Summit.

Robins McIntosh, keynote speaker

The event will feature up to 56 expert speakers from around the world – you can see them here -. Among them stands out the Summit's keynote speaker, Robins McIntosh. A renowned shrimp farming expert, McIntosh is the executive vice president of Charoen Pokphand Group Co., Ltd., which he joined in 2001 to help restructure shrimp farming in Thailand and Southeast Asia. Under his leadership, hatcheries have been modernized, genetic programs have been implemented, and farm management has become more systematic and biosecure.

With more than 30 years of experience, he continues to work to increase the efficiency of shrimp farming and find solutions to eradicate shrimp diseases. His projects span grow-out systems, shrimp feeds, and hatchery technologies. In fact, Robins McIntosh is also CEO of Home Grown Shrimp, a U.S. subsidiary of CP Group focused on shrimp production in indoor RAS facilities in the United States, which another land-based shrimp producer, Bjørn Aspheim – founder and CEO of Noray Seafood, in Spain – told us about in his TalentView, especially highlighting the genetic part.

The 2023 Shrimp Summit program is a mix of field tours and informative sessions. In-depth discussions on the first day will focus on global production and markets, disease management, sustainable feeds, and improvement programs. On the second day, the topics will be shrimp breeding, grow-out intensification, expanding the market, investment, and innovation. As mentioned, those who cannot attend the Summit in person will also be able to do so virtually. For those interested, the complete agenda is available here. Before, during, and after the Summit, the TCRS online community will host informative discussions and relevant resources.

About The Center for Responsible Seafood

The Center for Responsible Seafood (TCRS), formerly the Responsible Aquaculture Foundation, envisions a world meeting the critical need for seafood through regenerative processes and responsible seafood production. The nonprofit organization intends to move beyond 'sustainability,' which involves maintaining current conditions for future generations, to 'regenerative production,' which seeks to restore environmental and social systems to levels better than the current condition. In 2021, TCRS launched an e-learning program and continuing professional development courses and certifications to address the needs of the growing and rapidly evolving seafood sector.

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