Challenging year predicted for West Coast shrimp

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NEWPORT – A recent report by a well-known shrimp, crab, and lobster market analyst, concludes that prices for cold water shrimp are “declining in all markets.”

Lower catch volumes in 2016 coupled with slower sales have led to supply imbalance. Inventory carryover, a strong U.S. dollar, and a weak British pound following “Brexit” are also contributing to price weakness.

The State of Oregon were set to oversee talks between fishermen and processors on March 23 to discuss pricing and other issues important to the fishery. The discussions will help industry get ready for the upcoming shrimp season, which opens April 1 and continues through Oct. 31.

2017 will be a difficult year for West Coast shrimp. There are a number of significant challenges affecting the market and pricing.

The West Coast cold water shrimp fishery extends from southeast Alaska to California. About one-third of West Coast shrimp is exported to other countries.  This year, the strong U.S. dollar means more shrimp will need to be sold domestically.

Retail remains the largest buyer of cold water shrimp on (the) West Coast, with an estimated 40 to 60 percent of domestic sales going to retail. Demand for shrimp at U.S. retailers in 2016 was a healthy 330 million pounds. Prices, however, fell 6.3 percent, from $8 per pound to less than $7.50 per pound last year.

Source:, 3/28/2017


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