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Japan increases Vietnamese tuna imports

Click on the flag for more information about Japan JAPAN
Thursday, November 07, 2019, 18:00 (GMT + 9)

VASEP, the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers organisation,  reports that if last year, Vietnam's tuna exports to Japan decreased continuously in the last months of the year, this year the trend shows more positive growth. The value of tuna exports to this market in September reached USD 2.1 million, up 19% over the same period in 2018. Therefore, the total value in the first 9 months of 2019 is still up 7.3% compared to the same period in 2018, as it reached nearly USD 21 million.

Currently, the Japanese tuna market is also experiencing positive changes. This is reflected in the import growth in the first 8 months of 2019, an increase of 0.2% in volume and 0.7% in value. Although cheap Atlantic salmon is still popular in this market, it has impacted the import of fresh tuna from Japan. 

And salmon is gradually taking away the market share of fresh Japanese tuna. Along with that, canned tuna products imported into Japan also tended to decrease compared to the same period.

However, because the market prefers quality sashimi over fresh tuna due to a longer shelf life than frozen tuna, imports of frozen tuna loin from Japan have increased.

Frozen tuna loin is currently the most imported product in Japan

By the end of August 2019, Japan is importing tuna from 60 countries around the world, but in this market Vietnam currently occupies a very small market share (although this country is one of the major export markets of Vietnam).

In the segment of Japanese fresh and frozen tuna market, Vietnam currently accounts for a very small market share. This is not a major export product group of Vietnam to this market. Meanwhile, the main sources of frozen tuna loins for the Japanese market come from Malta, China and Korea.

In the segment of processed and canned tuna, Southeast Asian countries are dominating the market. Vietnam is the country with the highest growth rate among these. Vietnam is currently exporting mainly frozen steamed tuna loin products, bagged tuna and pet food.

According to the statistics of Vietnam Customs, the export value of canned tuna products is accounting for nearly 61% of the total export value. And compared to the same period last year, the group of processed and canned tuna products is currently being promoted to export to this market.

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