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August Shrimp Landings Soar in the Gulf of Mexico

24 September 2015

US - Landings data from NOAA for August 2015 indicate that 19.8 million pounds of shrimp in the Gulf of Mexico were harvested last month. This is the most shrimp landed in the Gulf of Mexico in an August since August of 2006 (24.0 million pounds) and is roughly ten per cent above the previous thirteen year historical-average for the month.

Strong production in Texas (9.6 million pounds), Louisiana (6.6 million pounds), and Alabama (2.4 million pounds) have pushed landings upwards, reports the Southern Shrimp Alliance.

Ex-vessel prices reported by NOAA for the month show further collapse, with the degree of the decline varying by count size.

Although prices for large shrimp (U15 headless) were significantly below those reported in August 2014 and August 2013, they have remained relatively strong in terms of historic prices.

On the other hand, prices for medium-sized (26-30 headless) and small-sized (41-50 headless) shrimp have plummeted, with Northern Gulf prices for 26-30 shrimp reported this year ($3.24 per lb.) at less than half what they were in August 2013 ($6.65 per lb.) and Western Gulf prices for 41-50 shrimp reported this year ($1.13 per lb.) at almost one-quarter what they were in August 2014 ($4.25 per lb.).

A productive August was not enough to return overall 2015 shrimp landings back towards historical averages. For the first eight months of the year, the 60.2 million pounds of shrimp landed in the region remains nearly twenty per cent below the prior thirteen year historical-average (74.1 million pounds).

Landings in the state of Texas (22.0 million pounds) are very close to the historical-average of 22.2 million pounds.

The shortfall has been largely in Louisiana, where the 24.9 million pounds of shrimp landed so far in 2015 is almost one-third below the historical average of 37.1 million pounds for the first eight months of the year.

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