Salmon supply will be tight due to low production in Norway. Photo: Norwegian Seafood Council.

High seafood prices forecast throughout first half of 2022

Good demand will support high seafood prices in the first half of 2022, an aquaculture analyst at Dutch lender Rabobank said today.

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Supply for salmon will be tight, but shrimp supply will increase in the next few months, according to the bank. High production costs due to freight, feed commodity, labour, and energy costs will be a key theme this year.

According to Rabobank’s latest report on aquaculture, Omicron and possible new Covid strains are the key threat to recovering demand. A good demand environment for seafood is expected if the economic recovery from Covid continues.

Strong demand growth

“The US and EU will continue to experience the strong demand growth seen in 2021, and China is showing signs of recovery in import demand. For China, this should mean a return to pre-pandemic import levels during 2022,” said Gorjan Nikolik, senior global specialist in seafood at Rabobank.

Costs for all seafood reached new highs in 2021 as energy, feed commodity, labour, and freight costs increased sharply. And elevated input prices are expected to remain through at least the first half of 2022.

Regarding supply in the first half of this year, Nikolik stated: “Salmon supply will be tight and even negative due to low production in Norway. Shrimp supply is expected to grow, supported by the good price and demand environment. And we expect normal fishmeal production, with no El Niño.”