Belgium sends shrimp to Moroccan peeling units.
Rabat – Belgium is unhappy about the impact of COVID-19 lockdown measures on Moroccan shrimp peeling factories.
Belgian news outlets quoted director of fisheries market Tom Premereur who announced that his country’s supermarkets are facing a shortage of peeled shrimps due to the measures Morocco has undertaken to stem the spread of COVID-19.
The news outlets reported that shrimps caught in the North Sea are “indeed sent to Morocco” to “specialized” units that peel shrimps.
The units, however, are experiencing a slow-down in activities or suspensions due to COVID-19.
“As a result, we are seeing a shortage of peeled shrimp here,” Premereur said.
According to Statista data on the value of the shrimps imported to Belgium, the volume of shrimps imported has increased in recent years.
“In 2012, the import value amounted to roughly 280 million euros. By 2016, this had increased to over 310 million euros. Belgium is the fifth-largest importer of shrimps in Europe, after Spain, France, Italy and the United Kingdom,” the statistics show.
Several news outlets and culinary websites indicate the importance of shrimp, including gray shrimp, in Belgian food.
“The grey shrimp is generally considered one of the quintessential Belgian foods, present on every menu in the form of tomaat-garnalen or kroketten,” said Flanders Today.
The website said that Belgians consume 54% of the North Sea “catch of grey shrimp or brown shrimp.”
Morocco has been on lockdown since March 20 due to the outbreak of COVID-19. Morocco’s government put into force several restrictions and measures to limit the spread of COVID-19, including the shutdown of factories and industrial units to preserve safety of workers.
The country, however, is gradually restarting its regular activities since the country announced lockdown lifting measures.
Morocco relaunched industrial activities to revive Morocco’s economy, which was directly affected by the lockdown and state of emergency.