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3-Minute Market Insight

EP 514 | AIRED 11/16/2020

Oregon Pink Shrimp Fishery Update

November 16th, 2020 --- This week we give you an end of season update on the Oregon Pink Shrimp Fishery, comparing it to last year's harvest and what the 2020 buying market has in store.

--- Oregon's 2020 Pink Shrimp season ran strong from April 1st through October 31st, and could be described at a colossal success, even admist a global pandemic.

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The preliminary harvest totals came in at 42.9 million pounds, exceeding predictions from earlier in the year of 25 to 29 million pounds, using forecast modeling from environment and sampling data.

This was the highest catch since 2015, and was exceptionally higher than 2019's 26.9 million pounds and 2018's 35 million pounds.

WMO reports that a La Niña event has developed in the tropical Pacific in August-September 2020, exceeding both oceanic and atmospheric thresholds.

Oregon Pink Shrimp Fishery Update

These cooler temperatures typically increase the reproduction rates of species like shrimp and squid, and could relate to the high productivity for the 2020 season.

The Global Producing Centers of Long-Range Forecasts indicate a high likelihood (90%) of tropical Pacific sea surface temperatures remaining at La Niña levels until the end of 2020, and a moderate likelihood (55%) for them to persist through the first quarter of 2021.

Count per pound data for 2020 has yet to be completed, due to counting issues earlier in the season however our sources have implied the estimated average is sitting at around 125 ct/lb.

Despite a substantially higher catch, the value of the Oregon fishery this year was only slightly higher than last year at around 22.3 million USD, compared to 2019's ex-vessel value of 19.9 million USD.

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--- In reference to our April update, the foodservice-dependent shrimp industry did experience some major disruptions due to COVID-19.

In addition to the pressure on foodservice, we've been informed that sampling in plants was difficult due to social distancing restrictions, due to this Oregon did have to cancel their ROV cruise, intended to look at shrimp habitats.

While the majority of the state's restaurants have reopened, 8 major states, and many Canadian provinces have begun reversing back into lockdown mode, as case numbers continue to rise.

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Aside from delivery and take out, the majority of consumers have transitioned into regularly cooking from home.

With the impending reversals, and continued strain on restaurants grocery store sales are climbing again, nearly double what they were this time last year.

Our recommendation in lieu of this exceptionally productive season and tricky market, is to put an emphasis on retail customers as the foodservice markets remain undetermined due to closures.

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