Welcome to FIS   Sponsored By
United States
Subscribe to FIS | Register with FIS | Advertise with FIS | Newsletter | About FIS | Contact us
   


Portland Fish Exchange

Seafood industry struggling to stay afloat amid COVID-19 outbreak

Click on the flag for more information about United States UNITED STATES
Tuesday, April 07, 2020, 00:00 (GMT + 9)

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — The seafood industry has been upended by the spread of the coronavirus, which has halted sales in restaurants and sent fishermen and dealers scrambling for new markets.

Seafood is a global industry that relies on a complex network of fishermen, processors, buyers and distributors, all of which have been affected by the virus. A lack of demand has sent prices tumbling and led some fishermen to tie up their boats until the outbreak subsides.

Members of the U.S. seafood industry are calling on the Trump administration and Congress to help them weather the uncertain time. But for now, the market for big-money items such as scallops and lobster is “pretty much nonexistent,” said Bert Jongerden, general manager of the Portland Fish Exchange, a Maine auction house.

The auction house usually moves up to 60,000 pounds (27,215 kilograms) of fish in a week but is down to less than a third of that, Jongerden said.

“Heard some stories with people coming in with lobsters saying dealers wouldn’t take them,” Jongerden said. “And we don’t have a lot of fish.”

Shelter-in-place rules and closures have kept customers out of restaurants, where seafood typically fetches high prices. The worldwide shipping industry has also slowed considerably, in part because major markets like China, Italy and Spain have been hit especially hard.

The result has been plummeting wholesale prices. The wholesale price for live 1.25-pound (570-gram) lobsters in March was 33% under 2018 levels, according to business publisher Urner Barry. A ripple effect has been a slowdown in distribution, processing and the most important piece of the supply chain — fishing.

The industry could further suffer from economic slowdown, said industry analyst John Sackton, publisher of SeafoodNews.com. Customers worried about a recession might be wary of spending their grocery budgets on seafood, which tends to be more expensive than other proteins, he said.

The turmoil has prompted industry associations and companies with a stake in seafood, ranging from commodity giants like Cargill to local businesses, to ask the federal government for assistance. A coalition of organizations, including the National Fisheries Institute and National Aquaculture Association, sent a letter to the Trump administration in late March.

Photo: Portland Fish Exchange

The coalition suggested the federal government appropriate $500 million to purchase surplus commercial seafood that can be shipped overseas or supplied to domestic organizations.

“Failure to act boldly now to preserve our country’s seafood infrastructure will impose far greater costs on our economy and cause permanent damage to our nation’s ability to harvest, farm, process, and distribute seafood products,” the coalition wrote.

An aid package approved March 27 included $300 million to boost the industry. The stimulus package set aside the money for fishermen, fishing communities, processors and others who have suffered economic harm due to the virus. That could include direct payments.

Photo: Portland Fish Exchange

Some are turning to the retail market to try to help the industry stay afloat. Customers are still buying seafood at supermarkets, and there’s a possibility for growth because more Americans are cooking at home amid shutdowns, Jongerden said.

That could help the industry navigate a difficult time, said Ben Martens, executive director of the Maine Coast Fishermen’s Association, which represents small-boat fishermen in Maine.

“If we can get people playing with seafood at home again, it’s super good for our fishermen, it’s super good for our economy,” he said.

Photo: Portland Fish Exchange

April is key to the New England scallop fishing season, and members are hopeful for better prices — but it’s difficult to gauge what the market will look like, he said.

In Canada, where much of the world’s lobster is processed, they're watching closely to see when the pandemic might abate, said Jerry Amirault, president of the Lobster Processors Association of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. Processors normally get started in early May, but fishermen need to catch lobsters first, and this year’s harvest is in question.

“We’re all undergoing the same type of realization — this is an exceptional time in this pandemic,” he said.

Author: Patrick Whittle/The Associated Press

editorial@fis.com
www.fis.com


 Print


Click to know how to advertise in FIS
MORE NEWS
Netherlands
May 29, 14:20 (GMT + 9):
Restocking boost for European eel population
Spain
May 29, 07:00 (GMT + 9):
Other Media | Alimarket: Mercadona, Consum and Ikea are committed to innovation and the physical store
European Union
May 29, 06:30 (GMT + 9):
IN BRIeF - The European Parliament rejects a pact with London to leave fishing out
Canada
May 29, 06:00 (GMT + 9):
IN BRIEF - A Nova Scotia fisherman made a one in a million catch
Japan
May 29, 06:00 (GMT + 9):
Updated the minimum production of fisheries and aquaculture in the first year of Reiwa
Japan
May 29, 05:20 (GMT + 9):
IN BRIEF - 17% increase in this year's pacific bluefin tuna catch quota, the highest ever with additional allocation
Worldwide
May 29, 05:00 (GMT + 9):
Spiny lobsters raise an undersea racket that can be heard miles away
Denmark
May 29, 04:10 (GMT + 9):
Other Media | ipac.acuicultura: Blue IMPACT, the new concept of BioMar to reduce the environmental impact of feeding fish in the environment
European Union
May 29, 03:00 (GMT + 9):
Other Media | Fishing Industries: The European Commission proposes to inject an additional 500 million to the next EMFF to face the crisis
South Africa
May 29, 01:00 (GMT + 9):
South Africa’s aquafeed output rising
China
May 29, 01:00 (GMT + 9):
Other Media | SeafoodSource: China’s domestic salmon sector facing pressure from bad economy, Norwegian imports
United States
May 29, 00:10 (GMT + 9):
Amazon posts highest e-commerce growth in over three years.What if you use as seafood thermometer?
Japan
May 29, 00:00 (GMT + 9):
Volumes and prices | Main fresh fish: Skipjack, sardine, mackerel, saury and squid | Tokyo Markets (Apr-2020)
United States
May 29, 00:00 (GMT + 9):
Alaska pollock catches in season A (DAP in NMFS count) | week 20
New Zealand
May 28, 15:00 (GMT + 9):
Sanford Interim Results – Diversity Providing Resilience For New Zealand’s Largest Seafood Company



Lenguaje
FEATURED EVENTS
  
TOP STORIES
New daily life in the era of the post-coronavirus or the 'New Normal'
Japan The Japanese government has announced the lifting of the state of emergency across the country, which means many people can technically go back to work. However, this lifting doesn’t mean that ...
With remarkable performance Lidl tripled revenue and is about to open its 100th location
United States Although Lidl has been operating in the U.S. market for a relatively short period of time, its growth has been astronomical. In just a few years, the retailer has already reached a triple-digit store ...
Volumes and prices │ Squid and cuttlefish │ Tokyo Markets | 2020
Japan Source: FIS.com | Click to enlarge it  editorial@fis.com www.fis.com...
A warmer and more acid Arctic ocean: Challenges to marine organisms
Norway The possible impacts of ocean acidification (OA) on Arctic marine ecosystems is a primary concern, especially on time scales beyond the next election, or beyond our own lifetimes. The Fram Centre&rsqu...
 
Maruha Nichiro Corporation
Nichirei Corporation - Headquarters
Pesquera El Golfo S.A.
Ventisqueros - Productos del Mar Ventisqueros S.A
Wärtsilä Corporation - Wartsila Group Headquarters
ITOCHU Corporation -Headquarter-
BAADER - Nordischer Maschinenbau Rud. Baader GmbH+Co.KG (Head Office)
Inmarsat plc - Global Headquarters
Marks & Spencer
Tesco PLC (Supermarket) - Headquarters
Sea Harvest Corporation (PTY) Ltd. - Group Headquarters
I&J - Irvin & Johnson Holding Company (Pty) Ltd.
AquaChile S.A. - Group Headquarters
Pesquera San Jose S.A.
Nutreco N.V. - Head Office
CNFC China National Fisheries Corporation - Group Headquarters
W. van der Zwan & Zn. B.V.
SMMI - Sunderland Marine Mutual Insurance Co., Ltd. - Headquarters
Icicle Seafoods, Inc
Starkist Seafood Co. - Headquearters
Trident Seafoods Corp.
American Seafoods Group LLC - Head Office
Marel - Group Headquarters
SalMar ASA - Group Headquarters
Sajo Industries Co., Ltd
Hansung Enterprise Co.,Ltd.
BIM - Irish Sea Fisheries Board (An Bord Iascaigh Mhara)
CEFAS - Centre for Environment, Fisheries & Aquaculture Science
COPEINCA ASA - Corporacion Pesquera Inca S.A.C.
Chun Cheng Fishery Enterprise Pte Ltd.
VASEP - Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters & Producers
Gomes da Costa
Furuno Electric Co., Ltd. (Headquarters)
NISSUI - Nippon Suisan Kaisha, Ltd. - Group Headquarters
FAO - Food and Agriculture Organization - Fisheries and Aquaculture Department (Headquarter)
Hagoromo Foods Co., Ltd.
Koden Electronics Co., Ltd. (Headquarters)
A.P. Møller - Maersk A/S - Headquarters
BVQI - Bureau Veritas Quality International (Head Office)
UPS - United Parcel Service, Inc. - Headquarters
Brim ehf (formerly HB Grandi Ltd) - Headquarters
Hamburg Süd Group - (Headquearters)
Armadora Pereira S.A. - Group Headquarters
NOAA - National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (Headquarters)
Mowi ASA (formerly Marine Harvest ASA) - Headquarters
Marubeni Europe Plc -UK-
Findus Ltd
Icom Inc. (Headquarter)
WWF Centroamerica
Oceana Group Limited
The David and Lucile Packard Foundation
Ajinomoto Co., Inc. - Headquarters
Friosur S.A. - Headquarters
Cargill, Incorporated - Global Headquarters
Benihana Inc.
Leardini Pescados Ltda
CJ Corporation  - Group Headquarters
Greenpeace International - The Netherlands | Headquarters
David Suzuki Foundation
Fisheries and Oceans Canada -Communications Branch-
Mitsui & Co.,Ltd - Headquarters
NOREBO Group (former Ocean Trawlers Group)
Natori Co., Ltd.
Carrefour Supermarket - Headquarters
FedEx Corporation - Headquarters
Cooke Inc. - Group Headquarters
AKBM - Aker BioMarine ASA
Seafood Choices Alliance -Headquarter-
Austevoll Seafood ASA
Walmart | Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (Supermarket) - Headquarters
New Japan Radio Co.Ltd (JRC) -Head Office-
Gulfstream JSC
Marine Stewardship Council - MSC Worldwide Headquarters
Royal Dutch Shell plc (Headquarter)
Genki Sushi Co.,Ltd -Headquarter-
Iceland Pelagic ehf
AXA Assistance Argentina S.A.
Caterpillar Inc. - Headquarters
Tiger Brands Limited
SeaChoice
National Geographic Society
AmazonFresh, LLC - AmazonFresh

Copyright 1995 - 2020 Fish Info & Services Co.Ltd| All Rights Reserved.   DISCLAIMER