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July 11, 2013


The Wall Street Journal Reports on EMS/APHNS


It’s very rare when shrimp farming makes it onto the pages of the Wall Street Journal, the leading financial newspaper in the United States and probably the world, but on July 11, 2013, the Journal carried an article on EMS/AHPNS and the soaring shrimp prices in the United States.  The article does not contain much new information for readers of this page, but it does contain a slick graphic and some interesting comments.  Here are some excerpts:



Landry’s Inc., owner of seafood chains including Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. and McCormick & Schmick’s, is getting shrimp from other countries and considering making menu changes. “We may selectively raise prices,” says Chief Financial Officer Rick Liem.”


“As EMS affected East Asian shrimp producers, competitors such as India and Ecuador have been attempting to pick up the slack, though their output still trails that of Thailand.  But researchers at Mahidol University in Thailand says EMS could appear anywhere in the world, since the bacterium lives in natural waters.”


“A spokesman for supermarket chain Kroger Co. says the shortage is ‘affecting all retailers, including us’ and that ‘it will have an economic impact,’ but didn’t elaborate on how that will affect customers.”


Darden Restaurants, Inc., which operates the Red Lobster and Olive Garden restaurant chains, says 60% of its shrimp costs are covered by contract through the company’s fiscal first half, which runs through November, and that it expects shrimp costs to level out in the second half.  ‘We have no plans to raise shrimp prices,’ spokesman Rich Jeffers says.”


“The disease could cost Asia’s shrimp industry some $1 billion a year, according to the Global Aquaculture Alliance, a trade group based in St. Louis.”


“Identifying and containing the menace has proved difficult. On a recent sweltering day, CP Foods executives joined officials from Thailand’s Fisheries Department to inspect the shrimp farms sprawling along the coast east of Bangkok on the Gulf of Thailand.  They agreed to help small, local farmers come to grips with the problem by improving hygiene and focusing on cultivating heartier shrimp that are better able to defend against EMS.”


“CP Foods researchers suggest that requiring a 30-day quarantine for shrimp larvae would contain the disease and ensure shrimp survival.”


Source: The Wall Street JournalDisease Kills Shrimp Output, Pushes U.S. Prices Higher.  Nopparat Chaichalearmmongkol (email in Bangkok and Owen Fletcher ( and Julie Jargon (email in Chicago.  Research by Willa Plank (  Graphic by Alberto Cervantes (webpage  July 11, 2013.


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