The lockdown on account of the Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) adversely impacted the food production sector including aquaculture, globally. Unfortunately, it coincided with the major shrimp farming season in India which contributes 60% of the national annual shrimp production hence the impact was substantial. An on-line survey was carried out among the stakeholders of the shrimp farming sector to evaluate the prospective impact of COVID-19 related lockdown across the shrimp supply chain. The study estimated an economic loss of 1.50 billion USD to the shrimp aquaculture sector during the current year. It is expected that shrimp production and its export performance may be declining by 40% in the current season. The Garret ranking and Rank Based Quotient analyses projected severe constraints in shrimp seed production and supply, disruptions in the supply chain, logistics, farming, processing, marketing and loss of employment and income for the workers due to the pandemic. To mitigate the impact, the Government of India declared fisheries and aquaculture as an essential activity, facilitated the movement of inputs and services. Further, a major Fisheries Development Scheme(PMMSY) with a financial outlay of 267 million USD has been announced to usher in a blue revolution by strengthening the value chain, doubling the fisher/farmer income, employment generation, economic and social security for fishers/fish farmers adhering to the sustainability principles. Short and medium-term technical and policy measures are suggested to tide over the impact of COVID-19 related lockdown and related restrictions.
Keywords: COVID-19; Impact assessment; Mitigation measures; Shrimp aquaculture; Socio-economics; Supply chain disruption.
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