ANALYSIS - Global production of aquaculture and fisheries products is rising, but the value of world trade is falling because of a drop in prices.
According to a new report from the French market analysts France AgriMer, global production of all fisheries products last year rose by 2.6 per cent to reach 168.6 million tonnes.
In the previous year, actual production from catch fisheries rose only slightly by 0.7 per cent to reach 90.6 million tonnes.
However, world aquaculture production rose by for per cent to 78 million tonnes.
Trade is aquatic products was steady in 2015 at a live weight equivalent of 59.8 million tonnes with the value falling back by 9.6 per cent to $128.8 billion.
According to France AgriMer, the rise in production last year was spurred on by a rising consumption, which increased by two per cent to 147,5 million tonnes or more than 20.1 kg per person per year, with aquaculture products accounting for more than half of consumption at 10.6 kg per person.
France AgriMer said that fluctuations in exchange rates was one of the most influential factors in the changing aquaculture and fisheries markets around the world.
The rise in the US dollar against the currencies of leading exporters contributed to the fall in the value of trade as the prices of agricultural and food products are fixed in local currencies and then converted into dollars.
At the same time the depreciation of the Euro contributed to the increase in the price of imports to the European Union from neighbouring countries and major producers such as Norway and Scotland.
The analysts’ report said that despite the rise in prices for imports into the EU, demand was maintained, while imports to the world’s third largest consumer market Japan fell in volume because of the weak Yen.
The major country to benefit from the exchange rates and economic growth was the US, which has seen imports rise.
The emerging countries of Russia and Brazil, however, have been hit by the depreciation of their currencies and the difficult domestic economic situation, which has seen household spending fall.
The Russian market has also been hit by the embargo on imports which was put in place in August 2012 and has been extended until June this year and has also been extended to products from Iceland, which was a main supplier of mackerel and kippers to the Russian market.
Despite the absence of Russia, Norway has continued to benefit from high prices of cod and also took advantage of the drop in salmon shipments to the US from Chile to supply that market.
The index from the UN’s Food and Agricultural Organisation for aquatic products fell by 12 points in the first half of last year, as the price for some of those products that are most traded, such as shrimp and tuna fell.
Prices for aquaculture products also fell, but anchovy catches returned to normal following sharp falls in 2014.
You can view the full report by clicking here.