Recovering Chilean biomass levels mean high prices for the US set to continue

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Atlantic Salmon volumes at sea in Chile still 13 per cent lower than a year ago.

On Friday, Chilean fish farming statistics provider Aquabench published their monthly fish farming report detailing Chilean biomass statistics. The report shows that Chile harvested 496,000 tonnes Atlantic Salmon in August, a decrease of  16.2 per cent compared to a year earlier, but up 12.1 per cent on the previous month.

The figures represent a gradual improvement and the slow return to normal of biomass levels following the delayed smolt release in 2020 and the disastrous algae bloom earlier this year in March and April. Average harvest weights, at 5.1/kg, 9.4 per cent lower than the same month last year, reflect these factors.

While the total volume of biomass ready for harvest is still significantly lower than last year, the steady growth points to to a more normalised supply from Chile next year.

The report predicts that the coming three months will continue to see low relative and absolute supply from Chile. As a result of this, salmon prices into the US market are likely to continue to trend at a high level.

The report claims: “With average weights lagging on both the 20G and the 21G, there is clearly potential for strong biomass growth over the coming months following what appears to be decent biological control (stable feed consumption and Y/Y sea lice levels).”