EP 176 | AIRED 03/31/2014

Current Chum Market Conditions to Put Early Pressure on 2014 Fisheries

March 31st, 2014 - Welcome to The Tradex Foods "3-Minute Market Insight" This is Robert Reierson and here is the seafood news for Monday March 31st, 2014.

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---The current market condition of chum salmon will put early pressure on the 2014 chum fisheries in Canada and the United States. Chum availability has been on a very steady decline over the past 8-12 weeks with prices of higher quality fish strengthening. Brite fish are trading over $2.00 USD FOB Seattle at the moment, up from $1.75. Good meat color fish prices also climbed to over $1.60 FOB Seattle from the previous $1.45 USD. Alaskan production of higher grade chum salmon was low in 2013 as processors targeted higher priced fish such as Sockeye and consequently missing large portions of the early chum where bright and good meat color fish come from. Pale meat color fish which account for the majority of current inventories have also been driven upwards in pricing. Following the very strong Puget sound fishery of 2013, where a record catch of over 1.4 million fish were harvested, prices were driven down for pale meat color fish. Prices at that time were driven down from the $0.85 price level to between $0.60 and $0.70 USD per lb. FOB Seattle. Foreign processors started purchasing large volumes of pale fish as inventories of brite and GMC fish depleted Prices crept up to the $0.85-0.90 USD per lb. range in just a few weeks where they currently sit. Alaskan chum return is expected to be 19.6 million fish which is near but slightly below the 2013 figures. Companies have already begun negotiating large contracts in preparation for the coming season. Chinese processors, European smokers and domestic portioners will be competing to purchase raw materials for the season in what may a very competitive market given current inventory levels and strong demand.

---Thanks for joining me for the Tradex Foods "3-Minute Market Insight" This is Rob Reierson - “BUY SMART” and “EAT MORE SEAFOOD”

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