Eels have so far been unable to artificial reproduce on a large scale, As a result, eel farming mainly relies on wild seedling fishing, and the long cycle between spawning, fishing and culture also limits eel production。
Eel refers to a general name of species under the classification of anguilla, which is a kind of fish at the junction of salt and fresh water in production. There are nearly 20 kinds of eel species in the world, mainly named after regions, including Japanese eel, Indonesian eel, African eel, European eel and Australian eel, among which The Cultivation scale of Japanese eel and European eel is relatively large. Eel has rich nutritional value and low cholesterol content, which is beneficial to cardiovascular and cerebrovascular health. Therefore, it is favored by consumers and promotes the development of eel farming industry.
Eel farming in China started in the 1970s and has lasted for about 50 years. Eel farming methods mainly include open-pit stop-water farming, greenhouse stop-water farming and warm water farming. Currently, open-pit stop-water farming is mainly used in China. Eel production is limited by the long cycle between spawning, fishing and culture.
The catch amount of eel seedling is affected by many external factors, so the value fluctuates greatly. In 2020, the catch amount of eel seedling in East Asia is high, reaching more than 80 tons, but in 2021, it is about 500,000 tons. According to the structure analysis of eel seedling catch in East Asia in 2021, the catch amount of eel seedling in mainland China is the highest, accounting for about 68%.
Eel farming in China is mainly concentrated in Fujian and Guangdong, with European and American eel breeds in Fujian and Japanese eel breeds in Guangdong, according to a feasibility study report on Eel farming market in China from 2022 to 2026 released by New World. In terms of sales, Live eels are mainly sold in Guangdong, while grilled eels are sold in Fujian. China's eels are mainly exported in the form of grilled eel and live eel, among which grilled eel exports are relatively high, accounting for about 85% of domestic eel exports in 2020. China's eel exports totaled about 55,000 tons in 2020
China's eel exports to Japan are mainly 27,000 tons in 2020, accounting for 49% of the total export volume. In terms of export provinces, Fujian province was the main exporter of eels, accounting for 53% of the total, followed by Guangdong. Fujian province is the main eel breeding base in China, with more species and higher yield.
Industry analysts at Siworld said eel seedlings are mainly harvested from the wild and have not been artificially bred, limiting eel production. To ensure domestic eel production, the industry needs to encourage the development of more eel seedlings and improve management of eel seedling fishing to avoid overfishing. In the world, domestic eel production is relatively high, and the products are mainly exported to Japan, mainly in the form of roasted eel, among which Fujian province is the main breeding and export area of domestic eel.