Nordic salmon and trout excel in record export value.
In a press release on Tuesday, the Norwegian Seafood Council writes that the country exported 2.7 million tonnes of seafood to a total value of EUR 10.7 billion in 2019, with salmon by far reigning high in terms of volume and value.
This represents a 3 per cent decrease in volume but an 8 per cent (or EUR 843 million) increase in value, compared to 2018, which was a record year. This corresponds to 36 million meals every day throughout the year, or 25,000 meals per minute.
“The Norwegian seafood industry deliver high-quality products that correspond with global trends. Consumers around the world are seeking healthy, sustainable, and tasty food. Norwegian seafood is meeting this demand. Both the aquaculture and fisheries sectors have been instrumental in reaching record-level export value in 2019”, said Renate Larsen, CEO of the Norwegian Seafood Council.
“In addition to a weak Norwegian krone and improved market access, we have seen a rise in prices for several of our most important commercial species. In sum, this has led to strong demand and higher prices for Norwegian seafood,” added Tom-Jørgen Gangsø, Director of Market Insight and Market Access at the Norwegian Seafood Council.
The NSC said that aquaculture represents 71 per cent by value, and 44.6 per cent by volume. In 2019, Norway exported 1.2 million tonnes of fish from aquaculture worth EUR 760 million. Volume increased by 7 per cent, while export value has increased by EUR 560 million or 8 per cent compared to 2018.
Salmon and trout
Salmon is by far the largest species both in terms of volume and value. Salmon exports in 2019 amounted to 1.1 million tonnes, representing EUR 725 million in export value. Export volume increased by 6 per cent, and export value increased by 7 per cent or EUR 480 million from 2018.
“The weakening of the Norwegian kroner and increased demand for Norwegian salmon are the two main reasons for the increase in value 2019”, said Paul T. Aandahl, Seafood Analyst with the Norwegian Seafood Council.
Trout is the second major fish species. 59,600 tonnes of trout were exported with a value of EUR 370 million. Volume increased by 29 per cent while export value increased by EUR 70.7 million or 24 per cent compared to 2018.
“Generally, we see that trout prices follow salmon prices. That is why the price of trout remained at almost the same level as in 2018, despite relatively large growth in export volume”, said Aandahl.
2019 also saw a significant increase in the trade of seafood between Norway and China.
“2019 was the year where Norwegian salmon made its comeback in the Chinese market. Throughout the year, market access has bettered terms for Norwegian players with interest in the Chinese market. We expect the positive trend to continue for 2020,” said Victoria Braathen with the Norwegian Seafood Council in China.
“Our research and seafood studies show that consumers all over the world already perceive Norwegian seafood as safe, sustainable and of high quality. If we are able to position Norwegian seafood’s position as the most sustainable option, our calculations indicate that the export value can potentially double in the next decade, reaching NOK 200 billion (EUR 20.3 billion)”, said Renate Larsen, CEO of the Norwegian Seafood Council.