February 1, 2021 --- This week we update on the Pacific Cod and Pollock situation as COVID-19 delays Alaska's "A" season fishing, and production and logistical complications in China continue to put a strain on inventories in North America.
--- Alaska Plant closures to prevent COVID-19 spread, "A" Season fishing delays due to extra COVID-19 precautions, Sky rocketing container shipping rates, Dalian port closures, Reduced plant production volumes and Chinese New Year closures - are all factors that will contribute to the short supply and upward pressure on pricing.
If you planned on having Pacific Cod or Pollock in your program for 2021, our recommendation is to secure your requirements as soon as you can.
With the temporary closures of some plants in Alaska, UCN has reported that "it could be a month before any significant amount of landings are registered thanks to the coronavirus pandemic."
Pacific Cod harvest in Alaska's BSAI and GOA are showing about 13,000 metric tonnes as of January 23rd - trailing slightly behind the pace in 2020 where 23,000 metric tonnes were harvested by February 1st, 2020.
According to NOAA Fisheries Federal Register documents, the final 2021 Total Allowable Catch for Alaska Pacific Cod is about 113,000 metric tonnes compared to 154,000 metric tonnes in 2020.
Pollock harvest in Alaska's BSAI and GOA are showing about 2,900 metric tonnes as of January 23 - well below the pace in 2020 where 99,000 metric tonnes were harvested by February 1st, 2020.
NOAA Fisheries final 2021 Total Allowable Catch for Alaska Pollock is about 1.58 million metric tonnes compared to 1.55 million metric tonnes in 2020.
--- Moving onto China and production plants are still unable to supply enough product to meet rising demand as Chinese New Year closures loom right infront of the industry as well.
As ports are still experiencing heavy delays, we are hearing that boats loaded with raw materials for China have been anchored waiting to offload for over 6 weeks now.
At the time of reporting we have also heard there may be 30,000 metric tonnes of Pollock waiting to be offloaded to ports.
If supply issues are not enough, container shipping rates have more doubled in the past month and are up six-to-seven times the prices seen a year ago, with no signs of dropping - according to UCN.
Some example of rates that we have experienced from Dalian China are $6200 USD to ship to Boston now instead of $4700, and $4300 to Seattle instead of $3200 back in October.