The course of the Fisheries as per 20th of February 2012

Published: by Norges Sildesalgslag
Atlanto Scandic herring fisheries hampered by bad weather, small capelin in the Barents Sea leads to low interest among buyers, - fairly steady for the blue whiting Atlanto Scandic herring (Nw Spring Spawning herring)
Even if it is not correct to say that the Atlanto Scandic herring season is yet over, the participation is drastically reduced. Also harsh weather’s influence on the activity has led to just a modest volume last week of 2.200 MT. Obviously some of the herring stock now is bound for migrating further south. Some vessels from southern areas will most likely participate if the herring is being observed as far south as off the island of Karmøy and into to the fjords of Rogaland. As a result of low quantities, the prices rose, and the average of the week was NOK 6,13. Among the plants in production last week, three were producing herring roe. To these producers it is important to get the herring with roe and of good quality.

Capelin in the Barents Sea
Neither in the Barents Sea have the weather conditions been the best. This has to some extent been hampering the activity. Close to 22.500 MT were the result of last week; some 14.000 MT for reduction - and some 8.000 MT for consumption purposes. However, it is not fair to just blame the weather for being a hindrance. Also the small size of the fish limits the buyers’ interest. The mixed catch average was 45 psc/kg. This size does not call for high demand among the plants. Instead this fact makes the vessels to wait hoping better sized capelin will appear shortly. Alternatively vessels have chosen to go for the small fish delivering all their catches for reduction purposes (meal/oil). The prices are increasing if the vessels choose to sail further south for delivering. Some vessels have been landing in Denmark. Auction prices for meal/oil purpose; NOK 1,39 – NOK 1,90, for consumption NOK 1,80 – 1,94. The average; NOK 1,64 for meal/oil, and NOK 1,84 for consumption.
The roe percentage is now 13, 5 % measured on shore, - somewhat higher measured at sea; 16 %. Saturday night the coast guard declared an area of special attention as there is a possibility of getting cod and haddock in the catches.

Blue whiting
The catching has also during last week been near Porcupine and in international waters. The registered volumes are totalling 10.000 MT. Reports tell that there is high volumes observed in the EU zone and periodically there has been just a short time trawling to get a full catch. The first vessels are already finishing their quotas both in the EU zone and in international waters.
The catches are mainly delivered in Killybegs, but also some catches in Peter Head. On Tuesday the first catch this season was landed in Norway.
There are some anticipations linked to the catch quality following long distance transportation, but the quality observed was good. As mentioned the main part has been delivered in Killybegs, even if the price may be better upon delivering further away from the fields. However, the fear of losing quality weighs more than the potential of a better price. In the end it is a question of catch volume and whether the vessel is returning to the field or not. The prices have been good; from NOK 2,57 to 3,14 with an average of NOK 2,71. By Sunday night 4 vessels were at the field and two were heading for the area.

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