Norwegian seafood exports fall significantly in August

Norwegian seafood exportsPHOTOGRAPHER: Norwegian Seafood Council

Norwegian seafood exports fell by 14 per cent in August. Seafood exports totalled NOK 7.3 billion. This is NOK 1.2 billion lower than in August 2019.

So far this year, seafood exports have amounted to NOK 68.2 billion. This is an increase of NOK 781 million or just over 1 per cent.

“The decline in export value in August is due to weakened demand and less traction from the weak Norwegian kroner exchange rate that we experienced earlier this year”, says Tom-Jørgen Gangsø, Director of Market Insight and Market Access with the Norwegian Seafood Council.

European holiday season

Salmon and cod accounted for most of the decline in August, with a reduced export value of NOK 764 million and NOK 236 million, respectively.

“The reason for lower demand is complex, but holiday season in Europe and reduced restaurant consumption is certainly part of the explanation”, says Tom-Jørgen Gangsø.

Poland, Denmark and France were the largest markets for Norwegian seafood in August.

A large decline in China

In 2019, China was the largest growth market for Norwegian seafood exports. Norway is now experiencing a much slower Chinese market. Compared with August 2019, the value of salmon exports to China decreased by 69 per cent in August this year. For the total Norwegian seafood exports to China, the picture is the same:

  • In August, around 7,600 tonnes of Norwegian seafood were exported to China.
  • The total export value was NOK 214 million.
  • This represents a volume decrease of 43 per cent and a decrease in value of 54 per cent.

Two challenges

“The Chinese salmon market has been affected by two waves, first the eruption of covid-19, and then in connection with the so-called incident at a food market in Beijing in June and subsequent media cases about corona and seafood”, says Victoria Braathen, the Norwegian Seafood Council’s fisheries envoy to China.

So far this year, Norwegian salmon exports have a total volume decline of 28 per cent and a decline in value of 32 per cent to China.

“While the first wave affected the restaurant and hotel market, the second wave has had a broader effect on the market. We expect demand to pick up again over the autumn”, says Victoria Braathen.

Source: Norwegian Seafood Council / Norway Today


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