Consolidation creating big players in the global shrimp-feed industry

Published on
February 15, 2023
A shrimp farm in Indonesia.

The world’s biggest aquafeed producers are tightening their control over the global shrimp-feed industry.

Acquisitions over the past decade have consolidated the shrimp-feed sector, with Skretting, Cargill, CP Foods, Thai Union, Grobest, Guangdong Haid, BioMar, ADM, New Hope Liuhe, and De Heus emerging as the biggest global players.

They have extended their advantage by establishing a strong emphasis on innovation and technology, with most operating their own research and development facilities anddemonstration farms, and developing proprietary farm-management software and smart-feeding systems, according to analyst Willem van der Pijl in a recent Shrimp Insights blog post.

Bangkok, Thailand-based CP Foods is believed to be the world’s largest shrimp-feed producer in terms of capacity, though its manufacturing operations are primarily located in South and Southeast Asia. CP Foods is the leading shrimp-feed producer in China, Thailand, India, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Vietnam.

Guangdong Haid, top aquafeed producer in China, owns more than 600 subsidiaries across China and abroad, with its shrimp feed sales believed to have outstripped those of rival CP Foods. Besides its dominant position in its huge domestic market, it also serves Vietnam, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, and

Stavanger, Norway-based Skretting, which is was absorbed by Nutreco in1994, is currently the world’s largest salmon-feed producer and third largest shrimp-feed producer. It runs seven shrimp feed manufacturing facilities in four countries,  R&D facilities in Ecuador and China. It recently invested in new facilities in Vietnam and Ecuador.

Wayzata, Minnesota, U.S.A.-based Cargill is rapidly growing its aquafeed business It has expanded to operate 20 feedmills, 14 of which are dedicated to producing feed forwarmwater species including shrimp. However, like Skretting, its market share in Asia remains small.

Aarhus, Denmark-based BioMar has also gained stature in the global shrimpfeed scene, fueled by several recent acquisitions. It became a top five player in Ecuador's shrimp feed sector after acquiring a 70 percent stake in Alimentsa in 2017, moved further into Vietnam through the purchase of a majority stake in Viet Uc’s feed business unit in 2021, and stepped further into the technology space with its acquisition of AQ1, a leading smart-feeding system supplier, in 2022.

Chicago, Illinois, U.S.A.-based ADM has scaling up its engagement in the aquafeed sector since its acquisition of Neovia in 2018 and now has significant operations in Brazil, Mexico, Ecuador, and Vietnam. It announced a deeper foray into China in 2017, and has said it will continue its push into China via expanded production in Vietnam.

While on a smaller scale, Ede, The Netherlands-based De Heus has also begun venturing into the shrimp-feed business. The company is the largest producer of freshwater fish feed in Vietnam and has the capacity to produce four million metric tons (MT) per year of animal feed in the country, including shrimp feed for domestic use. In 2020, De Heus acquired Neovia’s Indonesian assets,  and is aiming to grow its share of the shrimpfeed market there in coming years.

Ecuador, which had an estimated shrimp feed demand of about 2 million MT in 2022, is a primary target market ... 

Photo courtesy of Meri Hariantisasi/Shutterstock

Contributing Editor reporting from Hanoi, Vietnam

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