Global squid supply on the decline
By April Forristall, SeafoodSource assistant editor
16 November, 2009 -
The global squid market is in dire straits.
According to Food and Agriculture Organization statistics, 2009 landings totaled only 65,000 metric tons for the entire Southwest Atlantic area — disastrous compared to the 334,000 metric tons harvested there last year.
Catches around the Falklands/Malvinas were also extremely low, with only 45 metric tons of Illex caught from January to May this year, down from 94,000 metric tons caught during the same period in 2008.
Loligo landings also declined, although slightly less at 13,000 metric tons, down from 25,000 metric tons. In addition, the FAO reports that all main exporting countries reported lower exports. For instance, squid exports from Argentina in the first four months of this year totaled 28,700 metric tons, not even half of the amount during the same period last year.
The global shortfall is also reflected in import data from the National Marine Fisheries Service. Total U.S. imports from China, one of the main suppliers of the product, dropped to 46.4 million pounds, down from 48.7 million pounds last year.
Total U.S. imports through August totaled 82.9 million pounds, down from 97.3 million pounds during the same period last year, according to NMFS.
Other main markets for squid, such as Korea and Japan, were quite strong. However, exports to Spain declined. Spain imported about 629,000 pounds, down from more than 700,000 pounds the previous year.
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