Sky high price premium on big salmon

Aslak Berge

In a market characterised by high harvest of small fish, big fish can achieve up to EUR 2.8 in premium relative to 2-3 kilos of salmon.

Increasing lice pressure, especially in Møre and Romsdal, Western Norway has pushed forward slaughter, low average weights and a plentiful supply of fish under three kilos. Last week, salmon in the weight class 2-3 kilos were traded at EUR 3.4 per kilo, packed and delivered to Oslo, sales statistics from Akvafakta show.

Controlled by supply
Due to high lice surcharges, market leader Mowi has had to force the harvest of fish at two sites in Norway in recent weeks.

As much as 18 percent of sales volume out of Norway was 2-3 kilos of salmon last week. A high supply of a weight class that is not very in demand thus reduced the price.

Big fish
However, the situation is quite different for big salmon.

Salmon over six kilos was traded from EUR 5.7 (6-7 kilos) and up to EUR 6.1 for the heaviest salmon, 9+. The price premium relative to 2-3 kilos was a juicy EUR 2.6.

It paid off handsomely for the salmon farmers who keeping fish in the sea longer, feeding them a few extra pounds.

However, the supply of large salmon is quite lean.

Most in-demand
Only 6.2 per cent of sales volume last week was over six kilos, Akvafakta shows. Large salmon is particularly in demand in the classic air freight markets, in the US and the East.

Still, the weight classes of three to six kilos, which are most tailor-made for the central European processing companies’ fillet machines and smoking ovens, are the most in-demand. 74.5 per cent of the total sales volume of farmed salmon from Norway last week was fish between three and six kilos.


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