Salmon prices fall to new low

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Now it is approaching break-even for several fish farmers.

“Max 40 kroner (€4 euro) for 3-4 (kilograms), FOB fish farmer,” says a fish importer to SalmonBusiness. “There is a lot of fish being produced, there is a lot of fish in Scotland and there is a downward price trend.

For salmon buyers in the world market, this means cheap raw material and increased margins.

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 in print. We vary the sources we use and do not use the same sources each time.

Losing money
“It’s good for us. But several farmers are losing money – and it’s been a while since the last time,” he notes.

“There is a lot of unsold fish. The first time under 40 kroner (€4) on I do not know how many years. It’s been a while since,” says an exporter.

At the same time, good growth conditions are reported from the cages.

“There is less mortality, better feed conversion ratio. They are better at fighting sea lice. Now you use only the best feed. There are many factors that come into play.”

Derail
As if that wasn’t enough, it’s the trouble with the logistics.

“And now they are struggling with the Nordlandsbanen railroad, which is closed due to derailment. We have not been able to get enough trucks to cover that in Northern Norway. Many customers out there also buy fish to keep in (frozen) stock for later this fall,” he adds.

“Is there a bottom in the market?” asks one exporter.

Fulfilled
“It is a fairly confusing picture,” says another. “The market is so filled with fish that it is  hopeless. Prices must now be under 40 kroner, but will you sell at that level?” he asks rhetorically.

“It is almost impossible to sell. I think it will be two to three weeks now that will be very difficult. I don’t think it will be ok until August is over as the smokers are packed with fish.”

SalmonBusiness’ industry sources refer to the following farm gate prices for the most traded weight classes.

  • 3-4 kilograms NOK 38-39 (€3.8-3.9)
  • 4-5 kilograms NOK 40-43 (€4.0-4.3)
  • 5-6 kilograms NOK 46-48 (€4.6-4.8)

This is the lowest price level recorded since late fall 2017.