Video credit: Ahmed Shaheen (Egypt)
Review: Abdel Rahman El Gamal (Founder of the website and video channel)
Viet Nam is by far the world’s largest producer of Pangasius with a production that exceeds 1.2 million tons in 2013, with annual export turnover of at least US$ 2 billion. Two Pangasius species are farmed in commercial aquaculture; Pangasius hypophthalmus (Tra) and Pangasius bocourti (Basa). Currenly, Tra is the most popular species due to a higher yield and better dressing percentage compared to Basa.
Cages being one of the systems used in Pangasius culture vary in size from 100–1500 m3 and are sited on major river tributaries of the Mekong River delta.
The density of cages in a given body of water depends on the strength of water current. The same is true in regard to the stocking density of fish that typically ranges from 100-150 specimens/m3. Early feeding practices used to depend on on-farm made feeds using variety of ingredients such as trash fish, rice bran, and broken rice, which were then cooked to produce the feed. With the scaling-up of cage farming that coped with growing safety concerns, there has been an increasing trend towards the use of commercial pellets; the video shows a feed storage. The yield is of about 100-120 kg/m3/crop is probably a realistic estimate. Usually, the entire cage is harvested at a single time to meet the large volume requirements of processing plants. There are few hundreds of industrial- scale processing plants. Most of which, are certified for export and/or ISO certified.