The project “Establishing Sustainable Pangasius Supply Chain in Vietnam ” (SUPA) got underway in Ho Chi Minh City on August 2 with the aim to make Vietnam a sustainable, environmentally friendly pangasius producer and exporter.

With a budget of nearly 2.4 million EUR, of which 1.9 million EUR was funded by the European Union, the project will be jointly implemented by the Vietnam Cleaner Production Centre (VNCPC), the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP), and the World Wide Fund (WWF) for Nature of Vietnam and Austria.

The EU will provide direct support throughout the entire supply chain, from breeding fish fry, producing feed and processing products to the work of exporters, importers and finally consumers, including those in the EU, which is now the largest market of Vietnam ’s pangasius products.

According to Nguyen Hoai Nam, Deputy General Secretary of VASEP, the project will be implemented from 2013 to 2017, focusing on enhancing ability and promoting responsible production in producers, therefore improving quality and competitiveness of products, reducing harmful impacts on the environment and cutting production costs.

The project will also help provide information and technical assistance to small- and medium-sized enterprises and farmers to apply current regulations on sustainable production , said Nam.

It is expected to benefit 2,500 stakeholders and over 600 participating enterprises.

According to the VASEP, Vietnam ’s total output of pangasius is almost 1.2 million tones a year, accounting for 20.3 percent of the country’s aquatic production value.

Vietnam ships pangasius products to 142 markets across the world. Total export turnover reached 1.74 billion USD in 2012.