Mark Godfrey

Contributing Editor

Mark Godfrey is an Irish journalist covering the agriculture and fisheries sectors in Asia, with a focus on China. Proficient in Mandarin, he has frequently traveled across China's fisheries and aquaculture regions and learned the inner workings of China's corporate world during a nearly three-year stint at the Financial Times' “China Confidential” publication. He has also reported widely across Southeast Asia and the former Soviet Union. He has educational certificates in agriculture and food science, as well as Mandarin.

Published on
November 7, 2011

Editor’s note: SeafoodSource Contributing Editor Mark Godfrey attended last week’s China Fisheries & Seafood Expo in Qingdao. Here’s his first in a series of stories from the 16th annual event.

Tweaking products to Chinese tastes is increasingly important for seafood suppliers targeting the country. Among them is Chile’s PanAmerica, which sent chefs to China to meet with local clients, chefs and consumers.

“We’re working on cod in

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Published on
October 31, 2011

Rising labor costs and economic malaise in key EU and U.S. markets are forcing Chinese seafood processors to explore domestic markets and adapt through a mix of mechanization. Favorable government policies guaranteeing easier credit terms with state-owned banks has made the switch easier, according to one of the country’s leading processors.

Increasingly, scarce and expensive labor is the key challenge of 2011 for Yilufa Co., a processor in the

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Published on
October 4, 2011

According to a key campaigner for seafood sustainability in China, international NGOs aren’t engaging enough with China’s government, which he said is keen for help in shaping a more sustainable seafood sector.

Non-profits continue to take a “wrong, aggressive” approach on China, said Steve Trent, whose WildAid group recently ran an Aquaculture Awareness Week in conjunction with China’s Fisheries Protection Bureau and the Ministry of

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Published on
September 16, 2011

Mientras que un líder en desarrollo de la acuicultura, China está tratando de llegar en busca de ayuda al extranjero para mejorar las técnicas de salud de los peces.

Academias de formación de los profesionales de acuicultura en China "están muy interesados ??en colaborar en el desarrollo de vacunas y otras soluciones de control de la salud. Toxicología y nutrición son también áreas en que los chinos están interesados ??en establecer

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Published on
September 16, 2011

While a leader in aquaculture development, China is reaching out for help overseas to improve fish health techniques.

Academies training China’s aquaculture professionals “are very keen to collaborate on developing vaccines and other health control solutions. Toxicology and nutrition are also areas in which the Chinese are keen to establish academic exchanges,” said Alexandra Adams, professor of aquatic immunology and diagnostics at

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Published on
September 2, 2011

Capitalizing on China’s Twitter-like microblog service Weibo is among the tactics Norwegian salmon exporters are employing to revive sales in a market showing up to 30 percent annual growth. Sales have slipped this year after China brought in a new inspection regime, which was viewed as payback for the Norwegian Nobel Committee’s awarding of its peace prize to Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo.

Chinese media in May reported that Norwegian salmon

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Published on
August 19, 2011

An apparent attempt by Indonesian authorities to block low-priced frozen seafood imports from China is angering Chinese seafood exporters. Chinese frozen squid exporter, Yantai Rixiang, claims many containers has returned back to the exporters while others sent to Indonesian customers have been delayed at Indonesian ports. Lin Xiaolei, head of overseas sales at the firm, said she’s heard several reasons for the clamp down.

“I’ve been told

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Published on
August 9, 2011

Imitation may be a form of flattery, but Canada’s seafood importers are not impressed by competitors using their national brand in China.

Poor enforcement of labeling laws is one of the main obstacles preventing Canada from increasing seafood sales in China, according to Maggie Xu, trade commissioner for seafood at the Agriculture and Food Trade Commissioner Service based in the Canadian embassy in Beijing. Xu said Canadian seafood imports face

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Published on
July 5, 2011

Lower-than-usual temperatures has put pressure on tilapia supplies in southern China and forced prices upward. An unseasonably cold spring has had a “huge” impact on tilapia production, according to Yuan Zhuren, a researcher at Chinese Academy of Fishery Sciences Freshwater Fisheries Research Center, a research body attached to the Ministry of Agriculture.

Exporters agree. “This has not been a good year for tilapia production … Normally

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Published on
June 24, 2011

As Vietnam’s seafood producers get ready for Vietfish, the country’s largest seafood trade fair, which opens on 27 June, Scandinavian experts providing support to the sector locally say Vietnam’s aquaculture industry needs to diversify the species it’s farming while also improving branding and image in its export markets.

Yet Vietnam suffers a lack of workers skilled in modern technology needed to modernize supply chains in the seafood

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