This problem sounds vaguely familiar.
Prices for the tiny crustaceans are soaring because of a disease that’s crimping supplies in Thailand, Vietnam and China, the three largest producers of shrimp in the world.Like tobacco in the early US, to perhaps corn today, it seems to me natural forces make intensive continuous production in the same place difficult in the long run.
“Production is down substantially,” said Paul Brown, president of Urner Barry, a food industry market research firm that tracks shrimp prices.
The popular shellfish is now approaching a record $6 per pound, up one-third from the beginning of the year. In 2010, a pound of shrimp set consumers back $3.
Producers are blaming a disorder called Early Mortality Syndrome, which thrives in the warm waters of Southeast Asia. The disease is not believed to be communicable to humans and has been gradually worsening in the last few years.
More than one-third of U.S. shrimp imports came from Thailand last year, worth about $1.1 billion. Imports from the country are down 31% this year, Brown said.
Exporters are hopeful the disease can be treated in the near term.
Until then, analysts say the crisis will open opportunities for other shrimp-producing nations to fill market share.
“After a decade of explosive growth, the global farmed shrimp industry has reached a turning point,” said Rabobank analyst Gorjan Nikolik. “However, regions unaffected by the disease are emerging to fill the supply void and are benefiting from this high price situation. Producers in Ecuador, Indonesia, India, Bangladesh and Myanmar are rapidly expanding production.” [More]
If we have one more year of below trendline corn yields will this idea get more credence?