The Canadian Department of Fisheries and Oceans seized 28 illegal ghost traps, used to catch crabs and fish, from the coast of White Rock, British Columbia. The traps, which are not visible to radar and therefore pose a hazard to other vessels, were placed by unknown individuals and had no identifying markings. The DFO is reminding the public that ghost gear is a serious threat to marine life and the ecosystem, and is encouraging people to report any suspicious or illegal fishing activities, which damage the economy for legally obtained fish. Fishing industry representatives have come out in support of this initiative, as the highly lucrative Pacific Hake season is due to begin in a few weeks.
Korean import value of seafood rose 4% YoY in the first two months of 2023, with a higher price more than offsetting a slight decline in volume. Russia remained the largest origin, with ongoing strong demand for crab. Meanwhile, imports of tuna filets soared, driven by an ongoing demand growth for sushi and sashimi, in which tuna is typically used. (Continue Reading)
First Nations are asking the courts to overturn a Federal Government aquaculture decision that prevents them from farming salmon in their traditional territories, commonly referred to as the Discovery Islands. The Wei Wai Kum First Nation (Campbell River Indian Band), and We Wai Kai First Nation (Cape Mudge Indian Band), collectively known as The Laich-kwil-tach Nation on Mar 20 filed an application with the Federal Court seeking a judicial review of the decision made by Fisheries Minister Joyce Murray on Feb 17, 2023. Murray, the First Nations claim, usurped their rights as titleholders in the Discovery Islands and the surrounding area; the right to decide how their lands and waters would be used and the right to the economic benefits of their lands, waters, and resources. This caused “the loss of an estimated USD 12.3M in annual direct economic benefits from the lands, waters, and resources in form of full-time jobs, benefit-sharing agreements, and contracts with indigenous-owned companies that provide further indigenous employment.”
The surreal and desperate scramble boosted the survival rate of the hatchery-raised fish, but still, it was not enough to reverse the declining stocks in the face of added challenges. River water temperatures rose with warm weather, and a Trump-era rollback of federal protections for waterways allowed more water to be diverted to farms. Climate change, meanwhile, threatens food sources for the young Chinook maturing in the Pacific. Now, ocean salmon fishing season is set to be prohibited this year off California and much of Oregon for the second time in 15 years after adult fall-run Chinook, often known as king salmon, returned to California’s rivers in near record-low numbers in 2022. “There will be no wild-caught California salmon to eat unless someone has still got some vacuum sealed last year in their freezer,” said John McManus of the Golden State Salmon Association.
Final call for funding bids to help save Scotland’s king of fish Fishery and community groups which want to help save Scotland’s iconic wild salmon have been urged to bid for a share of a USD 156.10K (£145K) funding pot salmon. Scotland reminded organizations and projects that they have until March 31 to apply to its ‘wild fisheries fund’. The fund is part of a USD 1.61M (£1.5M) commitment from Scotland’s salmon farmers to support the conservation, restoration, and sustainable management of wild salmon populations. Projects which receive grants will aim to stem the decades-long decline in wild fish numbers through habitat protection, protection from predators, and restocking programs. Habitat loss and rising river temperatures primarily due to climate change have impacted wild salmon and sea trout populations throughout the UK and all over the Scottish coastline.
Salmon Scotland raises concerns about the proposed marine activity ban in letters to First Ministerial candidates. The trade body for Scottish salmon has written to all three First Ministerial candidates to seek continued support for the sector and to raise concerns about the proposed ban on the marine activity in stretches of water. Salmon Scotland chief executive Tavish Scott urged the MSPs to recognize the economic contribution of salmon farms, address the nation’s rural housing crisis, and take action to streamline the aquaculture licensing regime. Addressing the consultation currently underway on Highly Protected Marine Areas (HPMAs), which would see around 10% of coastal waters around Scotland closed to human activity, Mr. Scott said, “ a thorough understanding of the impact on business, livelihoods, and communities is essential”.
Norway’s Finance Minister Trygve Vedum defended his salmon tax plan to the Centre Party faithful, arguing that it will eventually be seen as the right move. Vedum was addressing the Centre Party national conference whose coastal members are distinctly uneasy about the tax plan, fearing it threatens the livelihood of hundreds of people engaged in salmon farming. As he arrived at the Trondheim venue he faced several anti-tax demonstrators urging him to scrap the tax plan, but it was not known if they were from his party. Vedum said it was great that people were making a fortune from aquaculture, but as they were using communal resources it was only right that they should share a little more.
There appears to be no end to the phenomenal rise in Norwegian fresh salmon prices, according to the latest data. After a brief lull in W10 when they slipped back for the first time in six weeks they have now hit a further new record with an average price of USD 11.69/kg (NOK 122.88). Quality 5- 6kg fish will almost certainly be fetching a lot more. Statistics Norway said this represents a rise of 3.9% over the past seven days. Fresh salmon export volumes appear to be holding steady with W11 total down by just 0.8% to 13.79K MT. In the two and a half months since the start of the year, fresh salmon prices have climbed by just over 36% from W1 figure of USD 8.53/kg (NOK 89.67). Very likely, most analysts believe, especially with an expected surge in orders as Easter approaches. The US appears to be driving the market, with demand growing almost week by week.
In W11, the cost of fresh salmon HON, sized 3-6 KG FCA Oslo, continued to rise to USD 12.27/kg. This is due to a 1% WoW and a 20% YoY drop in the export volume. Over the last 5 weeks, the exported volume has dropped by 16% compared to the same period in 2022, causing a significant surge in salmon prices. In addition, the exchange rate of EUR/NOK has also contributed to the high prices.
As the consumption trend is changing with the steady increase in imported live and fresh refrigerated seafood products such as salmon and yellowtail, opinions have been raised that product composition and differentiated marketing are necessary according to age groups. Park Hye-jin, a researcher at the Korea Maritime Institute (KMI), revealed this through a recently published research report titled 'An Analysis of the Substitute Relationship between Imported Marine Products and Domestic Products-Focused on Live and Fresh Refrigerated Products'. According to the report, Korea's live and fresh chilled seafood imports increased from 62.27K MT in 2000 to 71.17K MT in 2021, an annual average increase of 0.6%. In particular, as of 2021, salmon was the most imported seafood, accounting for 51.3% of the total, at 36.50K MT in 2021. Consumer preferences for fish for sashimi are also changing. As a result of KMI's online survey of 700 adult men and women aged 20 to 69 years old twice in 2019 and 2022, the awareness of imported salmon increased, and exposure of online information was due to the increase in Norwegian imports and the expansion of non-face-to-face consumption.
As imports of salmon and yellowtail increase, consumption trends are clearly changing. Salmon consumption is high among young people, and middle-aged while elderly people prefer domestic raw fish. It is necessary to develop products that can be consumed together with imported and domestic products. Since the Korea-Chile Free Trade Agreement (FTA) was concluded, Korea's seafood imports have increased rapidly. Looking at the status of seafood imports by the country as of 2021, the share of total imports in China and the United States decreased compared to 2000, while Vietnam, Peru, and Chile increased. As of 2021, fishery product imports by item were 322K MT of pollock, 135K MT of squid, 88K MT of shrimp, and 76K MT of sardines. Among the top items, pollock are imported as it accounts for a large portion of the imports from the Russian ocean-going joint venture, which is not related to the FTA.
Representatives of Japan and the Russian Federation on Mar 20 began discussing the conditions for catching salmon and trout by Japanese fishermen in the 200-mile Japanese exclusive economic zone for this year. Negotiations in the format of a videoconference will last until March 24 attended by representatives of the relevant departments of the two countries, as well as representatives of the Foreign Ministries of the two states. At the same time, according to the Kyodo agency, the date of similar negotiations on a quota for fishing in the 200-mile Russian exclusive economic zone has not yet been determined. Russia and Japan fish in each other's 200-mile exclusive economic zones based on a 1984 agreement. Every year, countries hold consultations to agree on quotas for catching seafood and discuss other issues.
Sea bream and salmon are expected in demand during Ramadan in Turkey. Fisherman Zeki Beybeyoğlu in Zonguldak said that citizens expect loaf and sea bream in demand during Ramadan. In Zonguldak, just days before Ramadan, citizens continue to show interest in fish. At the stalls, Salmon sold at USD 7.33/kg (140 TL), Horse Mackerel at USD 5.24/kg (100 TL), Haddock at USD 3.67/kg (70 TL), Seagrass at USD 3.93/kg (75 TL) and USD 2.62/kg (50 TL).
In London, a startup is making a plastic substitute out of seaweed. In Australia and Hawaii, others are racing to grow seaweed that, when fed to livestock, can cut methane excretion. Researchers are studying just how much carbon dioxide can be sequestered by seaweed farms as investors eye them as a new source of carbon credits for polluters to offset their greenhouse gas emissions. Then there is South Korea. It is one of the most established seaweed-growing countries in the world, and farmers are struggling to keep up with growing export demand. What was mainly a relatively small Asian industry is now coveted by the West. Far beyond South Korea, new farms have cropped up in Maine, the Faeroe Islands, Australia, and even the North Sea. Globally, seaweed production has grown by nearly 75% in the past decade.
Ecuador's shrimp sector, the country's main export star product, reported losses of more than USD 10M due to the 6.6 magnitude earthquake that occurred on Mar 18, in which 15 people lost their lives. The National Chamber of Aquaculture (CNA) of Ecuador indicated in a statement that the earthquake, with its epicenter located in the Gulf of Guayaquil, caused the partial collapse of the walls of shrimp farms located in the southern province of El Oro, on the border with Peru.
According to the Directorate of Fisheries, in 2022, the shrimp industry faced many difficulties, especially the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, which has had a strong impact on the value chain. Globally, fuel prices are unstable, and prices of raw materials, petrol, and aqua feeds have increased. Right from the beginning of the year, shrimp farmers have faced a difficult situation when most of the cost of input materials, such as seed, feed, biological products, chemicals to treat ponds, and more have increased. However, overcoming challenges and difficulties, the shrimp farming crop in 2022 was basically successful in terms of area, output, and damage rate was controlled at less than 5.3%. In particular, shrimp export turnover in 2022 reached USD 4.3B, up 11.2% compared to 2021 which is also the record high turnover of the shrimp industry so far.
On March 24, in Phan Rang-Thap Cham city (Ninh Thuan), the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development in collaboration with the People's Committee of Ninh Thuan province held a conference on "Management of brackish water shrimp seed and signed the Regulation on coordination in 2023". According to the Directorate of Fisheries (Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development), the country's brackish water shrimp production in 2022 will reach nearly 1.1M MT (up 8.5% compared to 2021). The output of black tiger shrimp reached more than 270K MT, white leg shrimp reached 740K MT, and export turnover reached USD 4.3B, up 11.2% compared to the same period last year. This is the year the shrimp industry has reached an all-time high. Although the export of commercial shrimp is high, the domestic source of shrimp seed is still limited and depends on imports from abroad. Specifically, in 2022, the whole country imported more than 171K white shrimp with the same father and mother and 328 black tiger shrimp.
In Argentina, the season of National water will start in April, forecasting its start by the end of the month in W16. This season provides higher volumes of sea-frozen products, such as shrimp.
From the beginning of the season until March 15, landings of 88.59K MT were recorded in the port of the capital of Chubut. The boats that continue to operate do so near Camarones, with yields of 1K/1.2K boxes in a day and a half. The harvest would close at the end of the month. In the absence of reports of an abrupt change in yields that have been recorded in recent days, the provincial shrimp harvest could be extended until the last day of March. It should be remembered that it was on November 24, 2022, when the start of operations was enabled and 8.7K MT were landed in Rawson, while 28.23K MT of shrimp were caught in December, which seemed like a monthly record, but at that point, it was already the best December in the history of the fishery within 12 miles. The following month, in January 2023, the biomass of Pleoticus muelleri allowed the beam nets to capture 31.35K MT. Meanwhile, February had days of bad weather and a union conflict over a case of violence in the port, so in addition to being a short month, there were several days without operations, and landings of 15.7K MT were computed. The public information available for March, up to the 15th, according to the National Undersecretary of Fisheries, is 4.53K MT were landed in Rawson.
Black Tiger shrimp (Penaeus monodon) is a popular seafood product in Bangladesh, and the season recently started with good bookings and sales for the EU market. The New Moon catching period, which begins on March 22, is a time when catches are significantly better. Despite this increased catch volume, prices for block frozen Black Tiger shrimp (CFR EU), headless and shell-on, are more or less the same price as last season. In W12, prices range from USD 6.50/lb for sizes 13–15 to USD 4.00/lb for sizes 41–50.
In the world, the average per capita consumption of fish and shellfish is 20kg, while in Mexico it is 13kg in Mexico City on March 22, 2023. Due to the development of aquaculture, Mexico is one of the 20 main producing countries of these species: shrimp, tilapia, trout, and catfish. Shrimp Farmed production in 2022 was 185K MT. The producing farms in Sinaloa, Sonora, and Nayarit stand out. The commercial value of Mexican farmed shrimp production is USD 1B. Nutritional contributions include iron, phosphorus, zinc, magnesium, and vitamin B12.