Cover Image
close this bookHandling, Processing and Marketing of Fish in Bangladesh - Part 1 (NRI)
View the document(introduction...)
View the documentAcknowledgements
View the documentGlossary of abbreviations
View the documentMap of Bangladesh showing regions and major cities
View the documentSummary
View the documentSection 1: Introduction
close this folderSection 2: Supply and demand
View the document(introduction...)
View the document2.1 Fish production
View the document2.2 Exploitation of enclosed inland waters
View the document2.3 Species and product form
View the document2.4 Domestic consumption
View the document2.5 Exports
View the document2.6 Prices
View the document2.7 Future outlook
close this folderSection 3: The marketing of fish for domestic consumption
View the document3.1 Trade flows
View the document3.2 Marketing channels
View the document3.3 Marketing margins
View the document3.4 Marketing infrastructure
View the document3.5 Handling and transport
View the document3.6 Losses
View the document3.7 Government intervention in fisheries marketing
View the document3.8 The role of co-operatives in fish marketing
View the document3.9 Conclusions: Market efficiency
close this folderSection 4: The shrimp industry
View the document4.1 Trade flows and intermediaries
View the document4.2 Marketing infrastructure
View the document4.3 Handling and processing
View the document4.4 Packaging
View the document4.5 Losses
View the document4.6 Quality control
close this folderSection 5: Conclusions
View the document5.1 Problems of the existing system of marketing
View the document5.2 Possible measures to improve the marketing system
View the document5.3 Benefits from the proposed measures
View the documentBibliography
close this folderAppendices
View the document(introduction...)
View the documentAppendix A: Source tables
View the documentAppendix B: List of scientific, Bangladeshi and English names of fish, molluscs and crustaceans
View the documentAppendix C: Functions of BFDC
View the documentAppendix D: Physical facilities belonging to BFDC

5.1 Problems of the existing system of marketing

The main problems affecting the marketing of fish in Bangladesh are as follows:

(a) The isolation of many fishing communities from their wholesale landing facilities, coupled with poor transport and lack of ice.

(b) Poor physical facilities for marketing of fish (i.e. Ianding centres, wholesale and retail markets).

(c) Widespread ignorance of the factors affecting fish quality and ways of overcoming them.

These problems give rise to substantial losses to the economy of Bangladesh. Quantification of such losses is very difficult without a series of detailed investigations, but the following estimates provide an indication of the order of magnitude of the problem:



Internally consumed:

Quantitative losses

at least 35,200 tonnes

discarded by-catch and

(4.6% of the catch)

dried fish loss

Qualitative losses

US$ 96 million

downgraded fish

Shrimp exports:

Quantitative losses

US$ 2 million

excessive washing

Qualitative losses

US$ 7 million +


It should be noted that the quantitative loss is equivalent to 340 grams per annum per head of population in Bangladesh; elimination of such a loss would allow consumption per head to be raised from the present 7.6 kg per capita to nearly 8.0 kg per capita.

This picture of quantitative and qualitative losses contrasts with the conclusion of a recent ADB report (Aquatic Farms Ltd., 1986) according to which prices vary little with quality and losses are not large. It should however be noted that the growing importance of fish culture will ease post-harvest problems rather than exacerbate them. Cultured fish can be harvested as and when required, avoiding the accumulation of unmarketable gluts, while arrangements for icing and packaging can be planned in advance of harvesting. All this tends to minimise post-harvest losses.

As discussed in Section 3.9, fish marketing is almost exclusively in the hands of the private sector, which is considered efficient compared to alternative systems which might be established. Nevertheless there is scope for increased competition in distribution, particularly at the assembly phase of the marketing chain.