Sao Mai An Giang Group: Making Effort to Improve Value of Vietnam Tra Fish

9:17:59 PM | 31/12/2010

On December 22, 2010, Sao Mai An Giang Group organized a contract signing ceremony of equipment and fish oil refining technology supply between IDI Corporation (a member of Sao Mai An Giang Group) and Desmet Balesstra Group (Belgium) to supply equipment and technology to the project of “fish oil refining factory”. This event not only marks an important milestone of Sao Mai An Giang Group’s development strategy but also makes it great significance for Vietnam aquaculture and seafood processing sector. Vietnam Business Forum reporter Quoc Hung talks with Mr Le Thanh Thuan, General Director of Sao Mai An Giang Group to learn more about the event.
Could you introduce some information about the project of fish oil refining factory and the content of the signed contract between IDI Corporation and Desmet Balesstra Group?
After many years of studying and doing research, Sao Mai An Giang Group has decided to invest in the building of a fish oil refining factory. The project is located at Vam Cong industrial group, Lap Vo District, Dong Thap province. The products of the factory will be extracted from Tra and Basa fish fat by using the most advanced equipment and technology, ensuring sustainability for environment and human. The initial capacity of the factory is about 100 tonnes of material a day. Two years later, the capacity will be expanded to 200 tonnes a day. The total investment capital of the factory is about US$15 million, of which Sao Mai An Giang Group contributes 40 %; the rest is from other credit organizations. The factory is expected to be put into operation by the end of 2011.
What benefit is the factory expected to create when put into operation?
The factory is born to make up significantly for dependence on palm oil resource yearly that Vietnam has to import. Besides, preeminent characteristics from fish oil will help improve public health. According to healthcare experts, Tra fish oil will be commonly used in daily dishes because it can improve the normal growth of human brain, especially for mental power of children, more importantly; it helps reduce risks of cardiovascular diseases for adults.
In addition, the factory will stimulate the demands and help improve value of Tra fish fat that has been for a long time dependent on exporting to China, Taiwan (China) to serve as material for processing animal food.
When Sao Mai An Giang Group decides to invest in this factory, besides preeminent characteristics of fish oil, what benefits will Vietnam aquaculture sector, specifically Vietnamese farmers get?
It has long been heard about fish oil in health care sector; however, not many people know that fish oil is a nutritional food due to small amount of fish oil worldwide. There is an abundant source of fish fat – a boom of production - due to strong development of Tra fish in Vietnam in recent years, but it is sold abroad at a very cheap price. It is very irrational. When our factory starts operation, it helps improve value of fish fat; this is very profitable for aquaculture sector and for Vietnamese farmers.
What is your comment on the issue that Vietnam Tra fish was put on the red list of WWF (although it is now retracted)?
For long time, Vietnam Tra fish has become a hot issue in the global market. Why? Because Vietnam Tra fish has many competitive advantages. This creates a very severe competition among seafood processors and producers in the world. In reality, some producers failed to compete; some have to stop their productionwhen Vietnam Tra fish enters into US market. This shows a huge competitiveness of Vietnam Tra that cannot be found at every country in the world.
Not only WWF, for a long time, we have heard much false information about Tra fish, e.g., Tra fish causing cancer. This misleading information aims to hamper Vietnam Tra fish from global market, but intelligent customers are knowledgeable enough to choose high quality products for themselves and Vietnam Tra fish is a perfect choice.