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Nov 7, 2012

Irish Crab Industry target Chinese Markets

Following assistance from Bord Iascaigh Mhara (BIM), the Seafood Development Agency and Bord Bia, the Irish Food Board, a number of key Irish seafood companies have attended the China Fisheries and Seafood Expo, which took place in Dalian this week.

 A total of twelve Irish seafood companies exhibited on the ' Ireland ' stand, marking Ireland's largest ever national pavilion at a seafood trade fair in Asia . These included Mc Bride Fishing, Sofrimar, William Carr and Sons, Shellfish De Le Mer, Atlanfish and Rockabill Shellfish.

Attracting over 15,000 visitors, the China Fisheries and Seafood Expo is a key seafood trade show in what is an increasingly important market for Ireland.  Traditionally, the Irish Seafood Sector has concentrated on key markets in France , the UK and Germany with a smaller niche markets in Asia . However, with an ever increasing population and middle class dynamic, China offers the Irish Seafood Sector the potential for real growth. Total exports of Irish seafood to China in 2011 were €2.9 million.

Latest data up to July 2012, details exports at €5.3 million. This equates to an 80% increase on 2011 before year end. This dramatic increase demonstrates the new business relationships Ireland has developed with key Chinese buyers in recent years. Trade in pelagic seafood accounts for €2.1 million of total exports in 2011 and €4.7 million of exports for year to date in 2012. The demand for premium Irish Shellfish, mainly crab and crustaceans, is also growing solidly and expected to be valued at over €1 million during 2012. 

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