S. Korea to boost ‘gim’ exports through quality improvement, new products

South Korea will develop quality seeds of gim, or dried laver, and extend support for its exports with a goal to achieve its global sales of US$1 billion by 2027, the oceans ministry said Monday.

It is part of the government’s comprehensive five-year plan to promote the gim industry, as it is the No. 1 export item among fisheries products for South Korea, though competition from such nations as China, Japan, Thailand and Vietnam has been getting fierce.

South Korean dried seaweed has accounted for around 70 percent of the global gim market, and its exports last year came to $650 million.

Under the plan, the government will expand research and development projects for new gim seeds that can adjust well to rising water temperatures and for various high-quality products.

It plans to devise tailored measures to diversify export markets and to launch various programs overseas to make more people familiar with the Korean name of gim.

The government seeks to introduce an exchange market dedicated to gim items in a move to ensure their stable prices and smooth distribution.

“This is our first-ever basic plan to nurture the industry into a high value-added one. We will spare no effort to jack up gim exports to $1 billion by 2027 and to globally promote K-gim,” Oceans Minister Cho Seung-hwan said.

Gim is usually roasted with sesame oil and fine salt, and served as a side dish in Korean dining. It is also used as a wrapping skin for gimbap.

Source: Yonhap News Agency