February 13, 2010, 2:25pm
Shemberg Corporation, the country’s largest carrageenan producer, is asking the government to impose restrictions on seaweed exports in order to assure availability of its raw materials.
Shemberg Chairman Benson U. Dakay, who is also Seaweed Industry Association of the Philippines (SIAP) President, disclosed that because of low seaweed production, Shemberg’s carrageenan output is currently down to only 30 percent of its 10,000 MT capacity.
“There’s no more seaweed in the Philippines. We have to rely on Indonesia, Vietnam. But there will only be planting if the government will provide financial assistance to farmers,” said Dakay.
The country’s seaweed export destinations are China or Hong Kong, 30 percent; France, 25 percent; US, 15 percent, South Korea, six percent; Spain, 10 percent; Denmark, four percent; and Brazil, two percent.