Iceland fish firm reports big rise in trawler earnings –

Iceland fish firm reports big rise in trawler earnings Published:  11 February, 2011

ONE of Iceland’s leading trawler firms has reported that catch values increased by more than 12 per cent last year.

HB Grandi, which has a large fleet including several wetfish and pelagic vessels along with a number of freezer trawlers, said catches by eight of its fresh fish ships totalled around 51,500 tons, earning 11.3 billion Icelandic kroners.- or almost £61 million sterling. By comparison the 2009 catch was 47,000 tons with a value of some £50 million – or 9.3 billion Icelandic  kroners. This increase is generally reflected throughout the catching industry.

HB Grandi operates five factory freezer vessels and their catches increased to 33,800 tonnes from 31,900 tonnes in 2009. The freezer fleet also saw its catch values rise by 16 per cent, £47 million from £40 million. Catches landed by the pelagic vessels last year came to 96,400 tonnes, with a value of 3.4 billion kroners – or £18.5 million This represents an eight per cent reduction in landings compared to 2009, but with a 28.30 per cent value increase.

Clearly, the company’s performance has been helped by the increase in prices for most fish species in the past 12 months. Iceland is also selling more cod and haddock to the United States which is prepared to pay premium prices for fish.

Other figures show that in Iceland as a whole the seafood industry was worth 209 billion kroners – or some £1.15 billion sterling the country’s economy. Many companies have innovated, developed new products, and improved yields and efficiency. The value of cod products accounts for approximately 36 per cent of the total value of seafood exports. Other figures show that catches by all Icelandic vessels in the first TEN  months of 2010 amounted to 112 billion kroners(about  £370-million)  compared  to just over 96 billion kroners  during the same period in 2009.  Total value has increased by 16.5 per cent year on year.