According to the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP), catfish export turnover in the first 5 months of 2024 was about 725 million USD, up 2% over the same period in 2023. In particular, the turnover in May 2024 reached 146 million USD, an increase of 8% compared to May 2024.

Catfish exports have grown positively.

The VASEP said that the US remained the largest import market for Vietnamese catfish in the first five months of the year. Followed by China, Europe, and some other South American markets.

For the US, frozen catfish fillets were the key product exported to this market. By the end of May 2024, frozen catfish fillet exports to the US reached more than 120 million USD, up 19% over the same period in 2023, accounting for 98% of the total export value of catfish to the market.


Among catfish products, the US is now increasing imports of deep-processed catfish from Vietnam. Notably, in April 2024, the export of processed catfish products to the US reached more than 300,000 USD, compared to only 5 USD of export value in April 2023 (an increase of 67,000 times).

Meanwhile, frozen catfish exports to the US market declined due to reduced demand.

Ms. Le Hang, Communications Director of VASEP, said that consumers in the US are increasing the demand for white fish, especially catfish from Vietnam. Recently, a large number of Vietnamese enterprises have participated in the North American Seafood Exhibition to introduce their catfish products. This type of fish is suitable for processing a variety of dishes, such as packaged fillets, frozen products, fish sticks, or fish burgers; therefore, it has attracted many importers. In addition, the declining supply of white fish to the US is also a positive signal for Vietnamese catfish exports to this market.


Regarding Europe, the VASEP said that the export turnover of catfish to this market in the first 5 months of 2024 only reached 70 million USD, still down 7% over the same period in 2023.

According to Ms. Le Hang, Duc surpassed the Netherlands to become the largest destination for Vietnamese catfish exports in the European bloc. Besides, in May 2024, the VASEP recorded positive growth in imports of Vietnamese catfish in many European markets, including Lithuania, which increased by 215%, Spain by 69%, Belgium by 62%, Greece by 46%, and Portugal by 15%.

Ms. Le Hang recommended that Vietnamese exporters make the most of the advantages brought by the Vietnam-Europe Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) to participate more deeply in the European market. At the same time, meeting the green standards of this market for environmental protection and sustainable development are important factors./.