|Processing pangasius for export at Nam Viet Company. Photo: provided by enterprises.|
From VND 3,000 to VND 3 million
In early April 2023, Nam Viet Joint Stock Company (Navico) and Amicogen Inc Company (Korea) inaugurated Aminavico factory and signed a strategic cooperation agreement phase 2. Aminavico was built on an area of 11,034 m2, is an automated biotechnological factory, specializing in the production of Collagen and Gelatine from Korean standard fish skin, and is also one of the only two current factories in Vietnam that can produce Collagen peptides. In phase 1, Aminavico has a processing capacity of 780 tons/year, with a total investment of USD 7 million. After that, the joint venture Navico and Amicogen continued to cooperate in implementing the strategy of phases 2 and 3, increasing the capacity from 780 to 1,200 and 2,400 tons/year.
According to Mr. Doan Toi, General Director of Navico, in the past (in 2000), pangasius skin was only sold for VND 3,000 /kg, now when processed into Collagen and Gelatine, the value has increased to a very high level, the price of the goods when it arrives. Amicogen’s consumers in Korea reached approximately more than VND 3 million/kg, thereby contributing to improving the value of Vietnamese exports and the value of pangasius. Currently, 15 customers have registered to buy this product from the factory.
With the current production capacity of more than 450 tons of raw materials/day, Navico’s processing plant can supply a huge amount of skin for collagen and gelatin production every day. Currently, Navico’s profit structure includes the following segments: frozen pangasius for export, raw fish farming, and aqua feed processing, value-added product processing, by-products and solar power. If there is more contribution from Collagen and Gelatine factories, Navico’s management expects the profit of the first phase of the factory to be 1.5 million USD, contributing to 10% of the profit of the business.
The project to extract Collagen and Gelatine from pangasius skin is part of Navico’s large-scale closed-loop production chain. This is also a strategic project in Navico’s plan to transform the structure into value-added products with high technical content. Therefore, Navico’s new direction of collagen and gelatin production and processing according to new technology is completely in line with the government’s scientific and technological development orientation, contributing to improving people’s quality of life and increasing the quality of life.
Many value-added products from by-products
Not only the traditional product of pangasius fillet, but also the pangasius processing and export enterprises are increasingly focusing on creating many high-quality, value-added products from pangasius such as: Collagen extract, Gelatine , Ranee fish oil, dried pangasius skin. According to annual statistics, the seafood industry provides about 4.5 – 5 million tons of raw materials for seafood processing, of which 60 – 70% of pangasius fillet processing is by-products.
According to Mr. Tran Dinh Luan, Director General of the Directorate of Fisheries, fishery by-products are a source of raw materials that bring added value to the industry when effectively utilized. To achieve this, businesses need to invest in technology, improve economic efficiency in processing value-added products, along with the Government’s policies to encourage development in this field to support enterprises to invest in by-products, to move towards a circular economy in the fisheries industry.
The production of Collagen and Gelatine from fish skin helps businesses optimize costs and profits when taking advantage of by-products in the production process of the core product, which is pangasius fillet. Accordingly, instead of being discarded, fish skin is used as an input material to produce Collagen and Gelatine. In addition to Navico, the leader in the field of collagen and gelatin production from pangasius skin in Dong Thap is Vinh Hoan Joint Stock Company, which also contributes nearly 10% to the company’s overall profit.
Exploiting other value from the by-product is pangasius fat, Asia Fish Oil Joint Stock Company in Lap Vo district, Dong Thap province (belonging to Sao Mai Group, An Giang) has successfully refined fish oil products with brand “Ranee”. This is a 100% nutritious cooking oil from fish, containing all the necessary nutrients for the body and bringing many health benefits. The production capacity of the factory reaches 400 tons of raw materials/day. Accordingly, raw fish fat is extracted from farmed fish under a closed process with strict quality control from feed to harvesting, processing and export. In addition to by-products, such as: pangasius skin and fat are used to create valuable and high-quality products to serve the needs of nutrition, health, beauty, and other by-products of the industry. This seafood processing industry is also used by the company to produce organic fertilizers for agricultural production, as animal feed…
Mr. Huynh Minh Tuan, Vice Chairman of Dong Thap Provincial People’s Committee, said that the province encourages processing enterprises to upgrade and renew pangasius processing lines in the direction of increasing products with high added value from the remaining parts. Tra fish fillet to make the most of by-products, contributing to the development of this “billion-dollar” industry.