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Strong Cod Prices Drive Record Norwegian Seafood Exports

The first quarter of 2015 has seen record seafood exports from Norway, driven by strong cod prices and high year-on-year increases in salmon exports, according to the Norwegian Seafood Council.

In the first quarter of 2015, Norway exported seafood worth 17.4 billion Norwegian Krone (NOK). This represents an increase of 3 per cent or NOK 445 million compared to the first quarter of 2014.

Most of the increase came in March, which showed export value rises of 13 per cent or NOK 741 million year-on-year.

Geir Bakkevoll, Communications Director at the Norwegian Seafood Council, said: "March delivered a new sales record, making the first quarter of 2015 the best ever for Norwegian seafood exports.

"This is despite weaker exports in the first two months of the year, compared to the strongest months of 2014. The strong cod price is one reason for these results.

"After a late start to this year's spawning season, marked by bad weather and a lot of time spent ashore, there has been a great deal of fishing activity in the period around Easter. This is confirmed by the increased quantities of exported Norwegian cod.

"In addition, salmon has had a strong quarter, partly benefiting from the weaker Norwegian krone against currencies like the Euro and the US dollar."

 

Salmon exports increased 

Salmon exports increased by five per cent in the first quarter of 2015 compared to the first quarter in 2014. Salmon exports in March were particularly high, with an increase of 14 per cent or NOK 533 million year-on-year.

The average price achieved for whole fresh Norwegian salmon fell slightly from NOK 43.91 per kg in March 2014 to NOK 41.48 per kg in 2015. Poland and France were the biggest importers of Norwegian salmon.

In contrast, Norwegian trout exports declined by 26 per cent, or NOK 165 million compared to the first quarter last year. The main purchasers of Norwegian trout are Belarus and Poland.

 

Increased sales of fresh cod but decreased sales of frozen cod

The export value of fresh cod, including fillets, totalled NOK 869 million in the first quarter. This represents an increase of 14 per cent or NOK 108 million compared to the first quarter of 2014.

In March, fresh cod exports grew by 48 per cent, or NOK 124 million, compared to the same month last year.

The export value of frozen cod, including fillets, reached a total of NOK 456 million in the first quarter. This represents a decrease of 30 per cent or NOK 196 million compared to the first quarter in 2014. 

 

Increased sales of clipfish, decreased sales of saltfish

The export value of clipfish totalled NOK 989 million in the first quarter. This is an increase of 15 per cent or NOK 128 million compared to the first quarter in 2014. The export volume fell by 3,570 tonnes to 22,103 tonnes in the first quarter.

In March, Norway exported clipfish for NOK 264 million – an increase of 11 per cent or NOK 27 million year-on-year.

The export value of saltfish decreased by 6 per cent or NOK 23 million compared to the first quarter of 2014. The export volume fell by 4,000 tonnes to 9,114 tonnes in the first quarter.

In March, Norway exported saltfish worth NOK 206 million – an increase of 5 per cent or NOK 9 million year-on-year.

 

Herring exports down, mackerel exports up

The export value of herring was a total of NOK 498 million in the first quarter. This represents a decrease of 31 per cent or NOK 220 million compared to the first quarter of 2014.

In March, herring exports decreased by 14 per cent or NOK 20 million compared with March last year. Lithuania and Poland are the largest export markets for herring.

The export value of mackerel decreased by 17 per cent or NOK 111 million compared to the first quarter of 2014.

In March, Norway exported mackerel worth NOK 113 million. This is an increase of 5 per cent or NOK 5 million compared to March 2014. China and Turkey are the most important markets for mackerel.

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