Salmon price slide continues

Fresh salmon prices in Norway were down again last week, which means they have fallen continuously week on week over the past two months.

The long decline has left salmon farmers and buyers alike asking: “When is it all going to stop?”

It is a long time since the sector has experienced such a prolonged downward spiral.

Better news is that Norway’s export volumes were at a record high last week, suggesting that consumers are taking advantage of lower prices in the shops and are back buying salmon again.

According to Statistics Norway, the export price for fresh salmon in week 34, including fish sold on contract, was NOK 76.87 per kilo (£5.71), 1.6% down on the previous week.

To give a comparison on the scale of the decline, buyers were paying more than NOK 120 per kilo (£8.92) around Easter.

Export volumes rose by 6.1% to 24,089 tonnes, the highest total so far this year. The figure is all the more remarkable because it comes in the middle of the holiday season, when many consumers are still away from home.

Sales to the United States and China have been particularly strong this year and there are signs that sales to France are picking up again.

Another possibility is that buyers are taking advantage of the current low prices and freezing part of their purchase in readiness for the peak Christmas period.

Frozen salmon export volumes fell by more than 40% to 250 tonnes while prices remained static at NOK 89.16 a kilo (£6.63).

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