CHILE FACTS

Fish Farmer - - Scottish Exports Drop -

Con­cern among Chilean in­dus­try play­ers is grow­ing as a steep drop in prices, mainly re­flect­ing eco­nomic de­te­ri­o­ra­tion and a shift in re­tailer sourc­ing strate­gies in ma­jor mar­kets, saw aqua­cul­ture com­pa­nies in­cur sub­stan­tial losses in 2015, said Globe­fish.

Two fun­da­men­tal fac­tors un­der­ly­ing the er­ratic prof­itabil­ity of the Chilean salmon farm­ing sec­tor is high pen den­sity, in­creas­ing dis­ease in­ci­dence and hence the need for an­tibi­otics, and a gen­eral lack of con­sol­i­da­tion.

The in­dus­try is now look­ing to reg­u­la­tors to ad­dress th­ese is­sues be­fore sus­tain­able growth can be achieved.

es­pite the ap­pre­ci­a­tion of the dol­lar against the Chilean peso (a fac­tor that has ben­e­fited the Chilean ex­port in­dus­try), low sale prices of salmon, cou­pled with high pro­duc­tion costs, led to very poor per­for­mance for the in­dus­try for 2015.

The de­ci­sion by ma­jor US re­tailer Costco Whole­sale in March to switch to Nor­way for two thirds of its fresh farmed salmon filet sup­plies was a sig­nif­i­cant blow too.

Ac­cord­ing to pre­lim­i­nary fig­ures from Ser­napesca, dur­ing the first nine months of 2015, some 257,607 tonnes of At­lantic salmon were har ested, 43.5 per cent less than the same pe­riod in 2014.

Prices are ex­pected to reach a turn­ing point in 2016, how­ever. Sup­ply should not grow higher than lev­els fore­casted and to­wards the end of the year, sup­plies of At­lantic salmon are ex­pected to tighten. As a re­sult, there could be some strength­en­ing of prices, es­pe­cially if the price growth for Nor­we­gian salmon con­tin­ues.

Given the con­tin­u­ous de­mand in­crease in the main global mar­kets, along with the re­cov­ery of pur­chas­ing power and the lev­el­ling of the ex­change rate of their cur­ren­cies, the level of prices could per­haps re­turn to more at­trac­tive lev­els. ,owener, in or­der for Chile to build back to its com­pet­i­tive global po­si­tion, con­sol­i­da­tion, reg­u­la­tory re­vi­sion and brand build­ing will all need to be un­der­taken.

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