NOAA has now published landing volume data for shrimp caught in the Gulf of Mexico for February 2015.
The Southern Shrimp Alliance’s analysis of NOAA data indicates that shrimp landings for the month of February were the highest for the month since 2009 and the fifth highest volume for the month over the last fifteen years.
For the entire Gulf of Mexico, the shrimp industry landed 2.9 million pounds of shrimp in February 2015. This total represented a 20% increase in the total volume of shrimp landed in both February 2014 and 2013 (2.5 million pounds).
The significant increase in landings was partially driven by a record production month in Alabama, where the 0.6 million pounds reported was the highest total for the state in any February reported in the fifteen year period reviewed by the Southern Shrimp Alliance. The increase was also driven by the largest volume of shrimp landed in Texas in any February (1.3 million pounds) since 2011 (same) and the fifth highest volume for the month over the last fifteen years.
In contrast to Alabama and Texas, Louisiana experienced its lowest volume February since 2011 at 0.5 million pounds – equal to the fourth lowest volume landed in Louisiana in February over the last fifteen years.
The February 2015 landings data were again understated as the NOAA report did not include shrimp landed in Mississippi for the third month in a row because of an insufficient number of dealers reporting data last month. Nevertheless, Mississippi has reported only minimal landings in February over the last several years, averaging around 61 thousand pounds of shrimp.
Over the first two months of the year, total landings in the Gulf are up compared to 2014, but are the fourth lowest reported for the region since 2001. This ranking, however, is likely highly dependent upon the fact that no landings have been reported for Mississippi this year. If numbers from Mississippi were reported, the total landings volume for the first two months of 2015 would likely be in the middle of the volumes reported over the same timeframe in the last fifteen years.
Nevertheless, the limited total production in the first two months of 2015 corresponds with yet another strong month of ex-vessel prices as reported by NOAA. Looking across count sizes, ex-vessel prices remained at or near historic highs in 2015, with the large (U15) count size reaching a record level based on data reported going back to 2001, and medium (26-30) and small (41-50) count size prices being reported at amounts significantly in excess of what was reported for the month of February between 2002 and 2013.
Source: shirmpalliance.com, 3-24-15