Norway’s seafood exports rose 4% in April

Despite a strengthening currency and the continuing negative effects of coronavirus Norway’s seafood exports increased by 4% in value terms during April, year on year. Salmon exports showed particularly strong growth.

Norway’s fish farmers sold 86,000 tonnes of salmon worth NOK 5.8bn (£501m) last month, a value rise of 9% and volumes up by 4%.

Paul T. Aandahl, analyst at the Norwegian Seafood Council, said that a year ago the market was thrown into great turbulence and uncertainty, but the good news is that salmon prices  are now rising again. He explained: “Measured in Norwegian kroner, the price increase for fresh whole salmon was 11% in April. Converted into euros, the price increase is as much as 25%. Overall, the exchange rate change had a negative value effect of NOK 702.9m (£60m) on salmon exports in April.”

Overall, seafood exports last month totalled  NOK 8.6bn (£743m), a rise of 4% on a year ago and is the second highest April figure so far.

Seafood Council CEO Renate Larsen said: “This is partly due to the fact that record high volumes are being exported at increased prices for salmon and snow crab, among other things. The demand for salmon in France and Italy is again increasing, while the Americans have opened their eyes to the snow crab.”

Renate Larsen, CEO of the Norwegian Seafood Council

Norway’s currency has strengthened this year, however, which means exporters are receiving less for their products. Tom-Jørgen Gangsø, director of market insight and access at the Seafood Council explained: “Our calculations show that the negative currency effect for all Norwegian seafood exports in April alone was about one billion kroner compared to April 2020. If we compare the first four months of this year with the same period last year, this effect amounts to two billion kroner.”

Exports of farmed trout totalled 3,800 tonnes, down 10% in volume but the value went up by 5% to NOK 246m (£21m). Sales of fresh and frozen cod grew strongly last month. Fresh cod was up by 61%  with the value increasing by 25% to NOK 385m (£33m). Frozen cod exports rose by 42% in volume and rose by 13% in value to NOK 315m (£27m).