The production of marine shrimp & prawns in impoundments, ponds and tanks, gained popularity in the early 1970 and today, over fifty countries export farmed shrimp. Our neighboring countries, India, China, Bangladesh, Iran and Sri Lanka all produce huge quantities of farmed shrimp. Shrimp export has a major share in the total seafood export of Pakistan, and constitutes almost 60% of the total fisheries export of the country. The annual catch of captured shrimp has been constant and meets domestic market requirements; however it has immense potential for exports.
The most critical considerations or factors for success of shrimps/prawns farming in Pakistan are:
- Technical know-how of shrimp farming & aqua marine.
- Suitable location with access to fresh water
- Disease management
- Localized shrimp seeds.
- Maintenance of salinity levels.
- Regular quality checks.
- Regular monitoring for Feed Conversation Ratio (FCR).
- Adherence to good farming practices.
- Regular water supply to the premises
Shrimp farm can easily be established/set-up in Sindh & Baluchistan due to accessibility of Indus delta areas and along coastal areas. The weather in these areas would allow two crops (4-5 months) to be cultivated in a year. Potential areas for shrimp farming in Pakistan are Keti Bandar, Gharo, Somyani, Dam & Gevenai.
Salt water is delivered from sea or through a 10-inch-diameter, 75 foot-deep well, dug on the premises. Salt water will be delivered by a pump/motor system using power from an outside source. An engine-driven pump backup system should be available in case of power outages.
Shrimp farm requires pumps, pipes & aeration fans to maintain water quality. Machinery required is available both locally and can be imported. Local machinery reportedly gives good quality output and after sales service is easily available.
Shrimp & prawns farming business does not need specialized skilled labor but requires a supervisor with some experience in shrimp farming. Owner/manager is the driving force behind the success of this venture. He takes active part in day-to-day business affairs and ensures adherence to quality.
Shrimp is a seller’s market. Consumption of shrimp has increased throughout the world in recent years on the other hand marine resources and natural habitats of shrimps are depleting due to various environmental factors. Local processors have lost international orders due to non-availability of required qualities & quantities. The controlling factor in shrimp export is shrimp production and not the market. Exporters of shrimp & prawns are confident that exports can be enhanced if production is increased.
Investment Required for Shrimps & Prawns Farming in Pakistan
The proposed shrimps & prawns farm is to be located preferably at Ketibandar Gharo, Somyani, Dam & Gevenai. Product includes ‘Head-on-Tail-on Live Shrimp’ for local consumption and export. Installed capacity of project is 20 tones with an initial utilization of 60%. Total estimated cost is Rs 2.10 million with fixed investment Rs. 1.07 million and working capital Rs. 1.03 million. Given the cost assumptions, IRR and payback are 60% and 2.5 years respectively.
Returns on investment and profitability are highly dependent on the efficiency of the production supervisor, interest of owner/manager and the quality of water available for ponds. Details of financials can be studied in the guide of shrimps/prawns farming in Pakistan by SMEDA.