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Increased exports of pelagic fish in 2016

Press Release   •   Jan 04, 2017 09:30 GMT

Norway exported 674,000 tonnes of pelagic fish for NOK 7.8 billion in 2016. There is a volume decrease of 15 per cent and an increase of NOK 11 percent from 2015.

Norway exported mackerel worth NOK 4.1 billion in 2016. This is an increase of 6 per cent from 2015. Exports of herring for NOK 3.1 billion in 2016, an increase of 22 per cent from 2015. Japan was the main export market for pelagic fish in 2016, followed by China and the Netherlands.

”Increased export values of pelagic fish in 2016 is a result of high prices in the markets for both herring and mackerel. This is due to relatively low quotas, as well as good demand in our main markets”, says analyst Kristin Lien from the Norwegian Seafood Council. ”The quality conscious markets of Japan and Korea account for a large share of Norwegian mackerel, while a larger percentage of herring are sold as fillets to Germany, Poland and Belarus”.

Japan is the largest export market for Norwegian mackerel

Japan was in 2016 the largest importer of mackerel from Norway, with an export value of NOK 950 million. This represents an increase of 32 per cent from 2015. China, which is an important processing market for mackerel to Japan, saw exports increased by 26 per cent to NOK 654 million. South Korea is the third biggest market for mackerel and here exports increased by 68 per cent to NOK 565 million.

Norway exported 302,000 tonnes of frozen mackerel in 2016. This is a decrease of NOK 12 per cent from 2015. The average price of frozen whole mackerel was NOK 12.90 per kg in 2016. This is an increase of 22 per cent compared to average prices in 2015.

Poland remains the largest export market for herring

Poland was the biggest market for Norwegian herring in 2016. Norway exported herring worth NOK 596 million to Poland in 2016, an increase of 108 per cent from 2015. The second largest export market for herring was Germany with a value of NOK 528 million. This is an increase of 52 per cent. The third largest export market for herring in 2016 was Ukraine, with a value of NOK 314 million. This is an increase of 45 per cent from 2015.

Norway exported 100,000 tonnes of frozen whole herring and 96,000 tonnes of frozen herring fillet products in 2016. Of the total value of exports of herring in 2016, frozen herring fillets accounted for 52 per cent, a record share. The average price of frozen whole herring was in 2016 NOK 9.66 per kg. This is an increase of 11 per cent from the year before. For frozen herring fillet products the average price in 2016 was NOK 16.75 per kg. This is an increase of 23 per cent from 2015.

The Norwegian Seafood Council works with the Norwegian fisheries and aquaculture industries to develop markets for Norwegian seafood through local market intelligence, market development and reputational risk management. The Seafood Council is headquartered in Tromsø and maintains local representatives in twelve of Norway's most important international markets. The Norwegian seafood industry finances the activities of the Norwegian Seafood Council via a tariff on all Norwegian seafood exports.

The Norwegian Seafood Council is a public company owned by the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Fisheries.