A global shrimp shortage has sent the price of America's favorite crustacean to an all-time high, despite a recent boom in the production of farm-raised shrimp.
A prawn-killing disease known as Early Mortality Syndrome has hit Thailand, Vietnam, and China, the three largest producers of shrimp in the world, sharply reducing supply. "After a decade of explosive growth, the global farmed shrimp industry has reached a turning point," says Rabobank analyst Gorjan Nikolik.
Here is a look at the shrimp crisis, by the numbers:
Price per pound for white shrimp
Percentage increase that represents over last year
Price a pound of such shrimp fetched in 2010
Price of a pound of black tiger shrimp in January
Price of a pound of the same kind of shrimp in July
Percentage of shrimp-farming operations in Vietnam's Mekong Delta that have been hit by the outbreak of the shrimp-killing disease
Value of shrimp the U.S. imported last year from Thailand, which provides about a third of America's foreign shrimp supply
Decrease, in percent, in shrimp imports from Thailand this year
Pounds of shrimp the average American eats per year
Percentage of the U.S. shrimp supply provided by domestic producers
Expected duration of the shrimp shortage, in years. High prices are expected to encourage increased production in other countries. India, for example, is expected to boost its shrimp exports to the U.S. by 69 percent.