Ongoing transport challenges characterize next week’s salmon trade. And prices remain unchanged

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Flat salmon prices into next week.

“Prices have been going sideways for several weeks in a row. There is no upswing. 46-49 kroner (EUR 4.6-4.9) at 3-6 kg, I think,” said a salmon importer to SalmonBusiness. “It has been the same price for three weeks in a row, so there is no difference,” he added.

“At best stable, but I think it is rather on the downside. I see falling prices. It is probably the fifth week with optimism at the beginning of the week and stable or down towards the end of the week. Unsold fish in Oslo. Prices sound very similar last week, but there is downward pressure.”

Facts

Every Friday after lunch, SalmonBusiness report spot prices for salmon. These are fish to be delivered the following week. We contact several links in the value chain, including farmers, exporters and importers, and always have at least five independent sources, although not all sources are necessarily displayed. We vary the sources we use and do not use the same sources each time.

The importer, who is based in Eastern Europe, does not notice much about the transport problems that plague Norway and the United Kingdom.

Read also: “We’re living through the worst driver shortage that we’ve seen in recent history.”

Investing
“I have no problem with that. I stick with transportation. We have our own transport fleet,” he said and added: “The farmers invest in the entire value chain, but they stay away from transport.”

“Up I want to say. At least we get a krone to one and a half more than we did last Friday,” said a fish farmer. “It looks positive. We are approaching October so it’s time to move on. With cold seawater, there will be no pressure on either lice or MAB (maximum allowed biomass), as we see it. It is a big increase for customers due to the currency,” he said, and referred to the following prices:

“49-50 kroner (EUR 4.95.0) at 3-4 kg, 50.50-51.50 kroner (EUR 5.05-5.15) at 4-5 kg and 51.50-52.50 kroner (EUR 5.15-5.25) at 5-6 kg. I’m a little unsure of 6+ due to issues with air freight trouble. We fly everything we get on planes and send the rest to Europe. In China, there are fantastic prices, 80 to 100 kroner (EUR 8-10) for 6+ kg,” he pointed out.

“It’s a little easier. A little better on transport. 49-50 kroner (EUR 4.9-5.0). I do not see any price premium of 6+, says an exporter.

Drivers
The challenges associated with transport are, also this Friday, a more central topic for market participants than the actual price discussion.

“It goes sideways. There are transport challenges on trucks in Norway. Transport hinders most things. Challenges across the board to get drivers. I think it will be long lasting. It’s not just salmon that come back after the corona. It goes by trucks most of it,” said an exporter.

“It has been a coming problem for a long time. Everyone has gone on a low salary. I see in Europe – they are missing several hundred thousand drivers,” he continued.

“Look at the container traffic to Asia; it has tripled in price. The entire logistics system has come to a standstill.”

“You should not buy a truck [load of salmon] without knowing that you have transport. If you are going to buy a spot market truck [in Northern Norway] today, it costs 50-60,000 kroner (EUR 5-6,000) to Oslo. You have to drive it empty back. It is in the spot market, we who have contracts pay less of course. You can not call a driver and get a car tomorrow to put it that way. You can just forget it. People do not bother to work for free anymore. If we do not take this into account, it will last for a long, long time. The solution may be that we have to transport more at sea.”