Norwegian exports of Snow Crab and King Crab experienced different outcomes for the first-half of 2023
The Norwegian Seafood Council has reported a decrease in value for its snow crab, but good king crab returns for the first half of 2023.
A decline in value for snow crab
Norway exported 4,750 tonnes of snow crab worth NOK 480 million (€41m\£35m) in the first half of the year.
Export value fell by NOK 58 million (€5m\£4.25m), or 11 percent, compared to the first half of last year.
Export volume grew by 67 percent
The USA, the Netherlands and Denmark were the biggest markets for snow crab in the first half of the year.
Good snow crab fishing with high catch rates from early in the season led to the total quota being fished up early in April, compared to June last year.
Increased landings early in the year resulted in record snow crab exports in the first quarter, with over 2,800 tonnes of snow crab. In the second quarter, however, exports ended at around 1,900 tonnes, which is on par with last year.
One third of exports go to the USA
“Over 34 percent of the export volume so far this year has gone directly to the USA, in addition to re-exporting markets such as the Netherlands and Denmark. There has also been an increase in exports to further processing markets such as Indonesia, Vietnam, and Bulgaria,” says Josefine Voraa, Shellfish Manager with the Norwegian Seafood Council.
Measured in terms of value, it is not as cheerful, as the negative development from last year’s price collapse has continued in 2023. The export price so far this year is thus at a historically low level, seen from a Norwegian perspective.
More uncertainty this year
“The reason is that last year’s problems have followed into this year. All supplier nations then had large inventories from the previous year. In addition, there have been challenges in Canadian fishing, which has contributed to more uncertainty”, Voraa explains.
June snow crab exports in summary
Norway exported 819 tonnes of snow crab worth NOK 78 million (€6.7m\£5.7m) in June.
Export value fell by NOK 6 million (€5.1m\£4.3m), or 7 percent, compared to June last year.
Export volume grew by 68 percent
The Netherlands, Indonesia and Denmark were the biggest markets for snow crab in June.
A good six months for king crab
Norway exported 914 tonnes of king crab worth NOK 474 million (€40.7m\£34.5m) in the first half of the year.
Export value increased by NOK 85 million, or 22 percent, compared to the first half of last year.
Export volume grew by 50 percent
The USA, Hong Kong SAR and South Korea were the biggest markets for king crab in the first half of the year.
“The reason for the growth is good demand for live and frozen king crab in all our core markets. Growth in the restaurant markets in Asia after the reopening, improved logistics to Asia and sanctions against Russian crab in the US and Europe are among the reasons for the volume growth in the first half of the year”, says Josefine Voraa, Shellfish Manager with the Norwegian Seafood Council.
Growth in the United States
Exports of live king crab increased by 231 tonnes, to 639 tonnes, in the first half of the year, while frozen increased from 200 tonnes to 274 tonnes.
“The USA was the largest market for both live and frozen red king crab in the first half of the year. Here there was an increase in the export value of NOK 59.4 million (€5m\£4.3m) compared to the first half of last year”, explains Voraa.
Norway is the sole supplier
The export volume to the USA ended at 302 tonnes, which is 58 percent higher than in the first half of last year.
“Norway is today the only supplier of red king crab to the market after Russian crab was banned. As the build-up of stock from last year has started to run out, the demand for Norwegian has been increasing”, says Josefine Voraa.
King crab June exports in summary
Norway exported 228 tonnes of king crab worth NOK 122 million (€10.5m\£9m) in June.
Export value increased by NOK 56 million (€4.8m\£4.1m), or 85 percent, compared to June last year.
Export volume grew by 140 percent
The USA, Hong Kong SAR and Vietnam were the biggest markets for king crab in June.