Guatemalan aquaculture, a success story for the region
The Aquaculture and Fishing division of AGEXPORT has been an example for over three decades for its use of state-of-the-art technology, implementation of best practices, usage of environmental-sustainable systems and the remarkable hard work of its producers and businessmen. This has displayed this division as a success story for the Central American region and on 2018 is heading to different markets such as China, Russia and Brazil, expecting a 10% rise in exports.
Aquaculture and Fishing companies in Guatemala have heavily invested for over 30 years in using technology and sustainable industrialization to develop top-rated products like shrimp, tilapia, tuna, gold fish and balanced foods. On 2017 its total international sales added up to more than US$200 million, a 24% increase compared to 2016.
AGEXPORT’s Aquaculture and Fishing division is formed by companies that grow shrimps and tilapias, as well as processing plants that gather products from small fishermen, balanced food producers and providers of key supplies for aquaculture. During the last years, we have pursued strategic actions to boost exports, which go from improving our production systems, adapting the best technology to boost our productivity, importing raw products to add higher value and re-export it and continue developing our current markets: The United States, Asia and Mexico; said Mr. Juan Carlos Bolaños, president of the Aquaculture and Fishing division of AGEXPORT.
According to Mr. Bolaños, for 2018 these companies expect a 10% increase in international sales, as they are intending to pursue new markets such as China, Russia and Brazil, offering products with the highest quality standards.
We are also planning to continue expanding our shrimp-growing industry, which in the past few years has been developing under a new process of using small pools with an intensive use of technology systems that allows growers to produce as much as 50,000 pounds per hectare per cycle. Nowadays, more than 100 companies are growing shrimps with this process, mainly to supply the domestic demand, said Mr. Bolaños.
Another key strategy being implemented by this division on 2018 is hosting the first ‘Guatemalan Aquaculture Symposium’ to share the experiences that led Guatemala to become a success story in this industry. The event will take place from June 6 to 8, 2018 at the Hotel Casa Santo Domingo Conference Center, in Antigua Guatemala.
Guatemala is nowadays a success story for the region, which helped us to have more than 20 renown international and eight national speakers sharing their experiences and knowledge on production, markets and trends, production technologies, prevention and control of diseases, genetics, nutrition, among other topics. Additionally, this event would create opportunities for national companies in this industry to promote their products and make businesses with key buyers, said Mr. Alexander de Beausset, member of the Aquaculture and Fishing division’s directory board.
We expect to have over 200 participants (national and international) at this event. On the last day of the event, we would host site visits at one of our shrimp farms, a shrimp lab and a tilapia-growing farm, to be able to display in situ what our aquaculture companies are capable of in Guatemala, remarked Mr. de Beausset.