Chile’s salmon biomass plunges

Aslak Berge

Down 20.7 per-cent in 12 months.

Chilean consulting firm Aquabench published its monthly production statistics over the weekend. Among other things, it is stated that the Chilean biomass of Atlantic salmon was 324,600 tonnes at the end of March. This represents year on year a 20.7 per-cent decrease.

The Chilean biomass of Pacific salmon coho and trout was 23,400 tonnes (+35 per-cent) and 23,700 tonnes (-36.3 per-cent), investment bank Carnegie reported.

Aquabench also works closely with the number crunchers at Kontali Analyse.

Declining biomass is also an issue in Norway. In comparison, Norwegian salmon biomass was 735,000 tonnes at the end of March, according to Seafood Norway’s Akvafakta. Over the course of three months, the Norwegian biomass has been drained of 105,000 tonnes of salmon.

According to Carnegie, Chilean salmon biomass for fish over four kilograms, to be harvested over the next four to six months, was a whopping 45.9 per-cent less than what it was 12 months ago.

Feed sales are also falling as Chile entered its autumn months. In March, 78,600 tonnes of fish feed were sold, a decrease of 12.7 per-cent year over year.

Carnegie analyst Lars Konrad Johnsen wrote in his analysis that algae blooms in recent weeks will put further pressure on the Chilean biomass. He added that lower sea biomass suggests “improved fundamentals” in the US market.

A tight supply of fish pushed up spot prices for salmon sharply on Friday. There is a particular shortage of large salmon, which achieved prices of more than EUR 7 per kilogram.


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