Decreasing number of king crab catches in Norway as prices go higher

Red King crabs in stone. Photo by: media
Red King crabs in stone. Photo by: media

According to Norges Råfisklag

The Norwegian sales organization, Norges Råfisklag, has informed that 40 tonnes of king crab worth NOK 16.6 million were fished in week 28, down from 42 tonnes/16 million the week before. Further, the average price for A-quality male crab was NOK 481/kg, up from NOK 475/kg the week before.

Also, the organization has detailed the distribution as follows: 13.2 tonnes in the Varangerfjord, 11.4 tonnes in the Laksefjord, and 4.7 tonnes in the Tanafjord. Finally, 3.9 tonnes in the sea area between Berlevåg and Båtsfjord and 3.2 tonnes in the Porsangerfjord.

However, the turnover of bag crab in week 28 was 205 tonnes to 2.7 million, up from week 27 when a turnover of 135 tonnes/1.8 million kroner. Most of the quantity, 116.5 tonnes, was delivered in Sør-Trøndelag. This was followed by Helgeland with almost 50 tonnes. Then, Lofoten with 24 tonnes, Nordmøre with 9.8 tonnes and Nord-Trøndelag with 5.4 tonnes. The quantity was delivered by a total of 85 boats.

For instance, the Norwegian Seafood Council indicated that the USA, Japan, and Denmark were the largest markets for Norwegian king crab last April. "The export value is only down 7%. As a result of increased export prices compared to the same period last year", explained Josefine Voraa, Seafood Analyst.

On the other hand, exports of live king crab to the USA and Canada increased in value by NOK 9 million. Probably due to Alaska supply shortages and the closure of some markets to Russian products. Exports to Asia remain challenging, and exports are declining by NOK 12 million compared with April last year," Voraa noted.

Snow crab market situation

The value of the export volumes of snow crab has been by 17%. Due to the export price being 11% higher than last year. Despite this, for the fourth month in a row, the export price of frozen snow crab is falling.

"High inventories in the largest and highest paying market, the USA. Together with increased snow crab quotas in Canada and a lot of Russian snow crab in Asia have led to the market situation for snow crab. Being far more complicated than it was at the same time last year," she concluded.

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