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Best month ever for Norwegian seafood exports

Press release -

Best month ever for Norwegian seafood exports

Norway exported 251,000 tonnes of seafood worth NOK 9.9 billion in October. Compared with October 2017, volume was down by 12 per cent, while export value increased by 10 per cent or NOK 884 million. So far this year, Norway has exported 2.2 million tonnes of seafood with a total value of NOK 80.7 billion. Export volumes have increased by 6 per cent, and export value has increased by 4 per cent or NOK 3.2 billion compared to the same period last year.

“This is the best ever export month for Norwegian seafood. An export value of nearly 10 billion is a fantastic milestone, and clearly shows how important Norwegian seafood industry is, both globally and nationally. This export value is 600 million NOK, ie over 6 per cent, above the previous value record, which was reached in October 2016. At the same time, October 2018 is also historic for the salmon. It has never been recorded higher values or volumes in a single month. We have also seen a positive trend for clipfish and saltfish for a long time, which is very pleasing, says Renate Larsen, CEO with the Norwegian Seafood Council.

All time high for Norwegian salmon exports

Norway exported 104,000 tonnes of salmon with a value of NOK 6.5 billion in October. This is a volume increase of 8 per cent and a value increase of 15 percent or NOK 827 million compared to October 2017. So far this year, Norway has exported 862,000 tonnes of salmon worth NOK 55.8 billion. This is a volume increase of 7 per cent, and a value increase of 5 per cent or NOK 2.5 billion compared with the same period in 2017. The average price for whole fresh salmon in October was NOK 58.39 per kg against NOK 54.50 per kg in October 2017. Poland and France were the largest salmon markets in October.

"October has beaten all records and there are several reasons for this. We saw a slightly weak September, but exports have risen sharply in October. Poland and the Netherlands, both of which are primarily forwarding nations, had a volume growth of 43 and 29 per cent respectively. This gives an indication of a positive consumer trend in other markets, such as Germany. The price increases and volume growth indicate that we are seeing a real growth in demand for Norwegian salmon”, says Seafood Analyst Paul T. Aandahl.

Significant growth in Norwegian trout exports

Norway exported 4,700 tonnes of trout worth NOK 293 million in October. This is an increase of 24 per cent and an increase of 21 per cent or NOK 50 million compared with October last year. Belarus and the United States were the biggest importers of Norwegian trout in October.

So far this year, Norway has exported 36,000 tonnes of trout with a value of NOK 2.4 billion. This is a volume increase of 22 per cent and a value increase of 6 per cent or NOK 130 million compared with the same period in 2017.

Still good cod prices

Norway exported 1,600 tonnes of fresh cod, including fillets, worth NOK 73 million in October. This is a volume decline of 26 per cent and a decline in export value of 20 per cent or NOK 18 million compared to October last year. Denmark and Sweden were the largest markets for fresh cod in October. So far this year, Norway has exported 59,000 tonnes of fresh cod, including fillets, with an export value of NOK 2.1 billion. Cod has seen a volume decline of 5 per cent but a value increase of 2 per cent or NOK 49 million compared to the same period in 2017.

"Exports of fresh cod have been reduced so far this year, but the reduction has been significantly less than the quota reduction. At the same time, we are seeing that the export of frozen whole cod is the category that has seen the largest volume contraction. Both categories have had significant price rises”, says Seafood Analyst Ingrid Kristine Pettersen.

Norway exported 5,600 tonnes of frozen cod, including fillets, worth NOK 232 million in October. Export volume fell by 34 per cent while export value fell by 10 per cent or NOK 25 million compared to October last year. China and the UK were the largest markets for frozen cod in October. So far this year, Norway has exported 57 000 tonnes of frozen cod, including fillets, to a total value of NOK 2.1 billion. There has been a volume decline of 15 per cent and a decline in export value of 2 per cent or NOK 46 million compared to the same period last year.

Growth trend continues for clipfish, and a strong month for salted fish

Norway exported 10,400 tonnes of whole clipfish worth some NOK 500 million in October. This is a volume increase of 3 per cent, and a value increase of NOK 25 million or 5 per cent from October 2017. Portugal and Brazil were the largest markets for clipfish in October. So far this year, Norway has exported 75,000 tonnes of clipfish worth NOK 3.5 billion. This is a volume increase of 3 per cent and a value increase of 5 per cent or NOK 157 million from the same period in 2017.

Norway exported 2,000 tonnes of salted fish with a value of NOK 99 million in October. This is a volume increase of 17 per cent and a 21 per cent increase in value, or NOK 17 million compared to October last year. Portugal and Italy were the largest saltfish markets in October. So far this year, Norway has exported 27,000 tonnes of salted fish totalling NOK 1.3 billion. This is a volume increase of 6 per cent, and a value increase of 18 per cent or NOK 197 million from the same period in 2017.

"So far this year, the price increases in both clipfish and salted codfish has been formidable, with price growth of 13 per cent and 12 per cent respectively. The high volumes of saithe are the reason why the clipfish category has seen volume growth. In addition, the volumes of saltfish have been higher than last year, and especially now in October. In sum, we are seeing a value increase in the conventional category. Portugal is the largest market here, and the Portuguese are almost “obsessed with” the Norwegian clipfish. This market appears to withstand price growth better than other markets, says Seafood Analyst, Ingrid Kristine Pettersen.

Herring exports increase by 7 per cent

Norway exported 16 600 tonnes of herring to a value of NOK 183 million in October. This is a decline in volume of 6 per cent but an increase in value of 7 per cent or NOK 12 million compared with October 2017. Poland and Lithuania were the largest markets for herring in October.

So far this year, Norway has exported 216,000 tonnes of herring worth NOK 1.9 billion. This is a volume increase of 10 per cent, and a decline of 5 per cent or NOK 93 million compared to the same period last year.

Norway exported 68,000 tonnes of mackerel with a value of NOK 1.1 billion in October. This is a volume decline of 35 per cent and a value reduction of 12 per cent or NOK 148 million compared to October 2017. In October, Japan and China were the largest export markets for mackerel. So far this year, Norway has exported 162,000 tonnes of mackerel worth NOK 2.4 billion. This is a volume decline of 33 per cent, and a decline in export value of 21 per cent or NOK 611 million, compared to the same period last year.

Large increase in export of prawns

October saw 179 tonnes of king crab exported to a value of NOK 52 million in October. This is an increase of 26 per cent, while the export value increased by NOK 11 million or 28 per cent. Japan and France were the biggest export markets in October. So far this year, 1,700 tonnes of king crab have been exported to a value of NOK 490 million. This is an increase of 9 per cent, while the value of the category increased by NOK 70 million or 17 per cent.

Norway exported 2,200 tonnes of prawns with a total export value of NOK 119 million in October. This is an increase of 145 per cent in volume, while the value increased by NOK 48 million or 68 per cent. Sweden and Iceland were the most important markets in October. So far this year, 9,000 tonnes of prawns have been exported to a value of NOK 686 million. This is a volume increase of 21 per cent and a value increase of 22 per cent or NOK 124 million.

"The big increase in October was from Iceland, which has bought over 1,000 tonnes of raw product from Norway. Also, the United Kingdom purchased a significant quantity of prawns this month”, says Insights Consultant, Josefine Voraa with the Norwegian Seafood Council. 

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The Norwegian Seafood Council works with the Norwegian fisheries and aquaculture industries to develop markets for Norwegian seafood through local market intelligence, market development and reputational risk management. The Seafood Council is headquartered in Tromsø and maintains local representatives in twelve of Norway's most important international markets. The Norwegian seafood industry finances the activities of the Norwegian Seafood Council via a tariff on all Norwegian seafood exports.

The Norwegian Seafood Council is a public company owned by the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Fisheries.

Press contacts

Paul T. Aandahl

Paul T. Aandahl

Seafood Analyst +47 975 04 124

Martin Skaug

PR Consultant +47 915 59 902