The course of the Fisheries as per week 10/2015

Published: by Jarle A. Hansen

Stormy weather has been dominating last week's operations both west of Ireland and in the Barents Sea


Blue whiting

Still another week with gales in the Atlantic, hampering the fishing operations. The outcome of the week was modest; just 35.600 MT, marginally above the volume of the foregoing week.  As previously this season the entire volume has been caught in international waters west of Ireland. The fleet has been trawling in different areas from 50°N and further north 180 n.m. just south of 53°N.

The main part; 33.800 MT have been sold for reduction purposes to buyers in Norway, Denmark and Ireland. The prices were in the range from minimum price NOK 1,83 to 1,98 at the highest. The average for meal&oil purposes; NOK 1,92.
Two catches have been sold for consumption purposes amounting to 1.800 MT. They were landed in Killybegs at prices from NOK 2,22 - 2,40.

The weather conditions have not been the most favourable this season, both vessels and crew have been thoroughly tested when operating under tough conditions. Totally the fleet so far has caught as much as close to 190.000 MT, - all in international waters, compared to 162.000 MT during the entire season last year. The question is now for how long the blue whiting will be available west of 200 n.m. Last year the last day of catching was 26th of March.

Capelin in the Barents Sea

In the Barents Sea as well, low pressures and wind have made it difficult for the fleet fishing capelin. As a total 10.200 MT were registered last week. Of this quantity 9.900 MT were sold for consumption purposes and just 300 MT for reduction.
The operations have been going on fairly far west from the Lopphavet area by beginning of the week and further west to an area outside Vannøya/Fugløya islands in the northern part of Troms County. On Saturday the Fishery Directorate closed an area for further fishing as samples proved to contain too much cod mixed into the catch.

As seen previously, the size of the capelin is small; just 53-70 pcs/kg mixed. What is positive is that most catches contain a high percentage of female fish, making the catches more attractive to buyers producing capelin roe. The maturation rate is now from 18-22 % enabling the producers of roe to start their production.

The prices at the auction vary from NOK 2,12 in the low end to NOK 3,- in the higher end. The average was NOK 2,41.

In the forthcoming week we still expect vessels to join the capelin fisheries if and when weather permits. The demand for capelin suitable for roe production is expected to increase as the Icelandic season was not the best this year. According to statistics received from Iceland still 145.000 MT are left of the Icelandic quota.

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