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
March 23, 2015

Chinese fishery officials are celebrating the launch of a large new trawler, the Ming Kai, which is being promoted in China as giving the country an edge in the hunt for shrimp and other species in Antarctic waters. It is Asia's largest processing trawler, according to a statement by the Qingdao Ocean & Fisheries Bureau, a government body.

Launched by Qingdao Ocean Fishing Co., also a government controlled entity, the vessel (whose name

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Published on
March 18, 2015

As China’s seafood sector struggles for brands to match international peers, a respected local food industry forum has published a list of what it says are the top 10 Chinese seafood brands, based on value and scale of distribution.

China Grocer Information Network (Shipin Shangwu Wang Zixun Pindao), which is an information and trading portal for food producers, names Zhangzidao as the most valuable national seafood brand. But aside from

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Published on
March 15, 2015

China’s tilapia farmers are gloomy about the outlook for prices, which are down by more than 15 percent compared to March 2014 as processing plants reopen after the Chinese New Year holiday. A mild winter and a surge in production in inland regions is blamed for pulling down farm gate prices.

Farm gate prices are however down to CNY 4.3/500g (USD 0.68; EUR 0.64  per 500 grams) since December and some way below the average prices paid for

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Published on
March 9, 2015

China’s total output of seafood in 2014 totaled 64.5 million metric tons (MT), up 4.5 percent over the previous year. The figure is the same as the growth figure reported for 2013 when China’s aquatic products totaled over 61.72 million MT, an increase of 4.5 percent year on year.

Of the total figure of 64.5 million MT for last year, aquaculture production at 47.62 million tons was up 4.9 percent while fisheries (domestic wild catch) at

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Published on
March 5, 2015

The issue of Chinese government subsidies to producers of seafood (and numerous industrial products) has again sent U.S. trade officials to take China before the World Trade Organization (WTO). American trade officials last month claimed China’s use of ”demonstration bases” (designated zones enjoying low-cost utilities and land) amounts to unfair subsidies. Several Chinese seafood producing regions have established demonstration bases,

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Published on
February 27, 2015

As China gets back to work after the annual Chinese New Year holiday, here’s some key themes that SeafoodSource will be watching in the Year of the Lamb (or Goat, as the same Mandarin word is used for both

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Published on
February 23, 2015

China’s growth in shipments of tilapia volumes went flat in 2014. But the fastest-growing export category in China’s seafood exports was shellfish at 272,900 million metric tons (MT) worth USD 1.70 billion (EUR 1.5 billion), up 16.5 percent and 26.1 percent, respectively, year-on-year. That’s according to data collected from China’s Customs authorities by SeafoodSource and checked against figures from the agriculture and commerce

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Published on
February 23, 2015

A document released to media by China’s Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine (AQSIQ) offers insight into the quarantine process for seafood at Chinese ports. The document is a list of seafood imports in December that were either returned to the original exporter or destroyed.

There is no indication of blame of any party but the document appears to have been released to highlight the vigilance of the AQSIQ on

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Published on
February 23, 2015

Norway and the United States both increased their seafood imports into China last year while Russia and Chile saw their shipments to Chinese ports fall significantly. Documents from China’s customs agency and agricultural ministry show Norway’s imports into China last year grew 24.7 percent in value terms to USD 540 million (EUR 476 million) and 17.4 percent in volume terms to 213,000 metric tons (MT). Meanwhile, Russian imports fell 5.5

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Published on
February 18, 2015

China’s seafood processing sector for export has slumped while shrimp imports are rapidly outpacing exports: These are some of the findings from the annual round up of the seafood sector by the agricultural ministry in Beijing.

China’s 2014 shrimp exports fell 16 percent while imports increased 11.8 percent year-on-year. That’s according to data for last year just released by the Chinese agriculture ministry, which blames the fall in

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