Chilean exports supplying China’s big party

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Chilean salmon exports to China are reportedly on the rise, helped by a trade route used for berries and Chinese New Year celebrations now underway, writes El Mercurio.

China began its two-week celebrations on Friday, but Chilean exports of salmon aimed at keeping the festivities supplied began in the fourth-quarter of 2017 with airlifted cargoes of chilled fish.

“We are very busy, and for the last month we have been sending, by air, about 100,000 kilos of fresh salmon per week,” Werner Knust, general manager of cargo company, Andes Logistics, was quoted by El Mercurio as saying.

Read Chilean exports reach record highs

Beijing, Shanghai and Guanzho have all been targeted, as the Chilean industry hopes for “a 75 percent” hike in Chinese exports this year, the newspaper reported. For comparison, Chile’s exports of fruit to “the East” are reportedly expected to grow by some 20 percent.

Indeed, Chilean farmers harvested a total of 175,600 tonnes of salmon in the third-quarter of 2017, up 37 percent year-on-year. “The increase in output from Chilean salmon farmers is expected to continue through the first half of 2018,” SalMar numbers say, although growth has slowed in recent months.

Chilean biomass, too, is up 15 percent over late 2016 and in fourth-quarter 2017 sat at 295,400 t round weight. As 2017 wound down, Chile’s total biomass hit 301,000 t round weight.

Meanwhile, output from Chile is expected to increase by 14 per cent to 149,600 t in the first quarter of 2018. Output from Chilean salmon farmers in the second half is expected to flatten out, so that for 2018 as a whole, the volume harvested in Chile is expected to rise by six per cent to 615,600 t, salmon-farming SalMar said.