U.S. rainbow trout supply to improve
By Christine Blank, SeafoodSource contributing editor
07 December, 2009 -
The U.S. rainbow trout supply is about to get some much-needed relief.
Despite production difficulties over the past two seasons due to government regulations and reduced water flows from the Eastern Snake Plain Aquifer, Idaho rainbow trout farmers expect increased supply this season.
"We have a good supply this year, better than last year. Our ability to grow and some of the improvements we have made have allowed us to do OK with our fish," said an executive with a large producer in Idaho, which raises the bulk of the U.S. rainbow trout supply.
He projected that his company will produce around 21 million pounds of rainbow trout this season, which runs from September 2009 to August 2010. However, the company's output for the 2008-09 season dropped; he declined to say by how much.
In addition to production issues, demand for rainbow trout has weakened somewhat this year.
"The restaurant industry is down, so demand is not as good as it was a year or two ago," said the executive. Still, many mid-priced and white-tablecloth restaurants continue to offer rainbow trout as a staple, he explained.
"People are eating out less in restaurants, but they do want seafood," he added. "There is an opportunity to move product, if you have the right product at the right price points."
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