Salmon spot price rebounds on tighter supply
Undercurrent News – January 30, 2015
Week six of 2015 will see Norway salmon spot prices rebound fairly sharply on tightening supplies, reports

Exporters speaking with the site’s editor, Aslak Berge, agreed prices have pushed back up to NOK 39 per kilogram in the north and NOK 40 in the south of Norway, from around NOK 35 last week.

Some farmers have tried for higher still, though the market has not agreed to this, one exporter added.

This climb of NOK 4/kg is being seen across all salmon 3kg and up, it seems, except when it comes to the largest sizes. A different exporter in the middle of the country put prices for salmon 6+kg at NOK 41. He too echoed that there were less fish to sell.

“Last week there was too much fish, this week there is 3000- 4,000 metric tons less” the first exporter said, referring to quantities which have gone for freezing.

“It is clear that it is only good that the price goes up again. It’s stabilized, it had been good. But we fear this roller coaster throughout the spring,” he added.

Labeling and Marketing

UK supermarkets failing to stock enough sustainable fish, says report
The Gaurdian by Rebecca Smithers – January 30, 2015
Sainsbury’s offers the most with 163 certified products, but despite rising consumer demand Tesco stocked 18, Morrisons eight and Lidl just seven sustainable seafood products

Some of the UK’s biggest supermarkets are not offering enough sustainably caught fish, despite soaring demand from consumers, according to new research published on Friday.

Video: 3 key takeaways from NFI Global Seafood Market Conference
SEAFOODNEWS.COM by John Sackton January 29, 2015

Here are three key takeaways from the NFI Global Seafood Market conference that concludes in Las Vegas today.  Shrimp will be plentiful, the Russians will buy less salmon, meaning more salmon going to other markets, and the biggest risk factors facing the US industry this year are not economic or supply based, but are political and regulatory risks.

We cover these points in our video.

On shrimp ‘the world is good’.  The key point is that global supplies will increase again in 2015, after having grown in 2014, and that although EMS is still causing significant mortality, shrimp farmers are learning to live with it and manage it. It is not likely to spread to new areas.   Although growth will slow in India, it will continue in Indonesian and Ecuador, as well as in Vietnam and Thailand.  For three years now, the main concern in the shrimp industry has centered around supply, and as a result buyers at the retail and foodservice level had to absorb hefty price increases.  Now the key factor is becoming demand.  What happens in the global shrimp market will depend on how rapidly major sellers can boost consumption and consumer demand.

The salmon market, which dodged a bullet this year with the Russian embargo on Norwegian salmon, may take a hit next year.  The reason is that all the substitute salmon Russians bought from places like the Faroe Islands, was paid for with oil money.  With oil prices down more than 50%, and the weakness in the ruble, they will not be able to buy this as much this year, and as a result, more salmon will have to be absorbed in other channels.  This can also affect the growth of Chilean sales to Russia – if they recede again, this salmon would flow back partly to the US.

Finally, political and regulatory risks are looming larger. Just at the time when the conditions for improved shrimp consumption and usage appear to be in place, there are moves in Congress to tighten laws regarding dumping, and to potentially take another run at shrimp imports, including at the major countries right now that have been largely exempt:  Indonesia and Ecuador.   The problem is that a year with rapidly falling prices, along with a surge in imports, looks very suspicious to people in the Commerce Department who focus on anti-dumping.  So if these laws are put in place, and a new push for anti-dumping sanctions is launched it will be a more difficult and costly battle to fight.

It also has the potential to upend the cost competitiveness of different producers in Asia and Latin America, so that differential duty rates again become a big driver of who can sell to the US.

A second political and regulatory risk is emerging with the political strength of the recreational lobby.  Retailers in the South who have made big efforts to promote and sell local Gulf species, largely through supporting fishermen and actively promoting US caught product, may be shut out as the success of management takes away fish from the commercial sector, and gives it to the recreational sector, which has consistently overfished their assigned quotas.

This raises all kinds of problems.  One is that the region that so loves its local fish could see its access to its favorite species cut back, and have only imports available. The second is that recreational management is much less precise than the current commercial fisheries management, and is an invitation to overfishing again.  So, not only is the potential benefit of healthy Gulf of Mexico fish stocks potentially being taken away from the public, but the very successful management that brought these fish populations back is at risk as well.

Large Proportion of Universities Committing to Serving MSC Sustainable Seafood
SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Cost Sector Catering] January 30, 2015

A large proportion of universities have made commitments to serve Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified sustainable seafood according to the People and Planet University league table 2015.

The People and Planet University league table ranks universities by environmental and ethical performance. Of the 151 universities in this year’s league table, 22 of them have made full commitments to sourcing MSC seafood.

Seven of the 22 have achieved first class awards and City University was ranked the highest achieving 5th place in this year’s league and scoring 90% in the sustainable food category. Salford, Bedfordshire, Greenwich and Brighton University all scored in excess of 75%.

George Clark, from the MSC said: “We congratulate those MSC universities for leading the way in trusted and traceable sustainable seafood. These MSC universities demonstrate what universities are serving their students and that sustainability matters increasingly to students and visitors.”

The University of Brighton was amongst those that were awarded the first class award, scoring 90% on the sustainable food section.

Jean Piper, executive head chef at Brighton said: “We are committed to only use MSC accredited fish on the green list, and convey to customers what MSC stands for and why it is so important to protect future stocks and species.

“MSC aims have been explained to all our staff so they can share the message and values with our customers. The great range of fish from TUCO suppliers is increasing all the time.

“Students are interested about the provenance of their food and the environment, and we’ve found they are genuinely impressed when they learn of the principles we use to source food.”

The Marine Stewardship Council is an international non-profit organization set up to help transform the seafood market to a sustainable basis.

Federal Register

Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Atka Mackerel in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area
A Rule by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration on 01/30/2015
NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for Atka mackerel in the Eastern Aleutian district and the Bering Sea subarea (BSEAI) of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Island management area (BSAI) by vessels participating in the BSAI trawl limited access fishery. This action is necessary to prevent exceeding the A season allowance of the 2015 Atka mackerel total allowable catch (TAC) in the BSEAI allocated to vessels participating in the BSAI trawl limited access fishery.


Sitka to sell several properties to Silver Bay Seafoods by Rachel Waldholz – January 28, 2015
Sitka will sell off a significant portion of its land at the Gary Paxton Industrial Park. The Assembly approved the sale at its meeting last night (Tuesday, 1-27-15). It’s the first of what may be several sales at the former pulp mill site.

Ann Owens
Pacific Seafood Processors Association
Office Manager
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Phone: 206.281.1667
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January 30, 2015