Norway's salmonid farmers set a new record for pre-tax profits in 2022, although it should be noted that the Norwegian krone has been weak against other currencies for some time, which increases the number of NOK earned for exports.

Norwegian salmonid farmers more than doubled pre-tax profit in 2022


The pre-tax profit made by the Norwegian salmonid farming industry more than doubled to NOK 35.5 billion (£2.62bn at today’s currency values) in 2022 – the year that the government decided to impose a 25% extra tax on the sector - figures from Norway’s Directorate of Fisheries show.

This compares with a pre-tax profit of NOK 15.9bn made in 2021.

The statistics are derived from an annual survey that represents 84.8% of grow-out licences (992 out of 1,170 in 2022) and 85.5% of hatchery licences (151 out of 169 in 2022), and are arithmetic averages based on all companies in the sample.

The Directorate worked out that the average operating margin increased from 18% in 2021 to 29.1% in 2022 for the Atlantic salmon and rainbow trout companies.

It added that hatcheries have a significantly lower average operating margin than grow out producers, but that average operating margin still increased, from 10.4% in 2021 to 11.4% in 2022.

Average sales price of Atlantic salmon increased by 31.6% from NOK 48.38 in 2021 to NOK 63.69 in 2022, while average sales price per kg of rainbow trout up from NOK 44.94 in 2021 to NOK 60.39 in 2022.

Production costs rose by 17.9% in 2022, reaching NOK 49.12 per kilo.

Production costs per kg increased by 17.9% in 2022, with the average production cost per kg reaching NOK 49.12. The Directorate said a general increase in the costs in Norway explain higher costs per kg in 2022.

“The costs for feed are the largest cost item in the production of Atlantic salmon and rainbow trout,” said the Directorate. “Feeding costs represents 44% of the total production costs per kg in 2022.

“Feeding costs increased by 28.8% from 2021 to 2022. This increase was caused by higher price on grain which is a component in the feed.”

Larger smolts cost more

The average production cost per sold fry/smolt was NOK 16.97 in 2022, a 9.4% increase compared to NOK 15.52 in 2021.

“Increase in the size of sold smolt explains the increase in the production costs over time. Larger smolt means longer production time and higher production costs,” stated the report.

The Directorate’s survey covered 81 salmon and trout producers and 81 hatchery operators.

More detail can be found here. The English language version is from pages 82-96.