Road to Brussels: In harmony

Vinh Hoan Corp. is once again looking to win an award at next week’s European Seafood Exposition.

Last year, the Vietnamese company won the health and nutrition prize in the Seafood Prix d’Elite new products competition for its Seafood Harmony — barramundi combined with jumbo black tiger shrimp and sea scallops and topped with sun-dried tomato, capers and roasted garlic butter sauce.

This year, Vinh Hoan’s Barramundi Flame Grill is among the 43 Seafood Prix d’Elite finalists, in the retail category.

Vinh Hoan spokesperson Doan Houng, speaking from Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, said the company is always looking to improve the product. The European Union is the product’s largest market, but Doan Houng seeks to enhance the flavor to appeal to more consumers. It also hopes to make Seafood Harmony one of its top-selling value-added products.

Despite the tempestuous state of Vietnam’s seafood industry, Vinh Hoan has fared remarkably well. The company’s turnover in 2009 totaled USD 116 million (EUR 86.2 million), up 16 percent from the previous year. Sales in January and February amounted to USD 15 million (EUR 11.1 million), despite higher raw materials costs.

Europe and the United States remain the two major markets for Vinh Hoan’s high-end products.

“The good sales figures reflect a trust in the products offered,” Houng told SeafoodSource.

With Seafood Harmony already a top seller, Vin Hoan is looking to make it two in a row at the Brussels event.

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