Five local seafood companies were able to rake in P193 million in booked and negotiated sales from Japanese customers during the recently concluded Tokyo International Seafood and Technology Expo, the Department of Agriculture said over the weekend.
Salvador Salacup, Agriculture Undersecretary for Fisheries and Livestock officer-in-charge, said that Filipino seafood companies were able to make a strong presence in the Japanese seafood trade.
Salacup, who headed the Philippine delegation, said that this is the first time that the agriculture department, together with the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources, sponsored the participation of the country’s seafood contingent in the said trade show.
“We are very proud and optimistic of Japan’s acceptance of the products produced by our participating seafood companies because all of them are compliant with the European Union’s [EU] food safety requirements,” he said.
The EU’s standard, which is based on Hazard Analysis of Critical Control Points, or HACCP, is one of the world’s most stringent.
Jillian Karen Lu of PhilFresh Corp. closed a one-year business deal with Nippon Suisan Kaisha Ltd. to supply ultra-frozen tuna sushi in Tokyo. Initially, the GenSan-based company will supply at least 10 tons of tuna slice a month that would generate some P119 million in annual earnings.
Lu said that the company expects demand to double by next year.
Henry Morales, president and chief executive officer of BlueFin Seafood Export Inc., famous for its premium quality octopus and squid products, took in close to 100 tons order of octopus products from five Japanese companies estimated at P26 million.
Morales said that he has yet to close deals with other companies who signified interest during the three-day event. He stressed that the company’s participation to the show would significantly translate to generating more jobs.
The three other companies producing fresh chilled tuna, namely, Nuevo Fresco Marine Trading Corp., D & L Seafoods and FRI Seafood Trading, were also able to chalk up negotiated sales amounting to P46.5 million and P1.46 million in booked sales.
Drusila Esther Bayate, BFAR assistant director for Technical Services, said that the country’s participation to the said event will open more opportunities for local companies who are compliant to international standards.
“There had been a number of inquiries for seafood products such as eel, abalone and shrimps which are sought-after by the Japanese consumers, and we are confident that we could fill in such demands,” Bayate said.