Squid overabundance in 2007 leads to an unfavorable price drop in the world market.
Squid catches in the Southwest Atlantic and their impact on the world market mirrored the results of the 2007 season. Illex landings were plentiful, but Argentine traders were unable to take advantage of the good supply, which resulted in price reductions of around 50 percent.
At the end of the day, prices were too low to keep up with increasing fuel prices, and part of the Argentine fleet decided to stay in port.
Catches of Pacific squid last year in Japan were so plentiful that cold storage holdings still included 2007 supply and were high at the beginning of the year. As a result, at the end of April, inventories were 10 percent higher than the April 2007 level, resulting in a substantial decrease in squid prices on the Japanese market.
The squid market is likely to stay oversupplied in the coming months, with further price discounts expected. China is at the top of the list of frozen squid suppliers to the U.S. market, having increased exports by 72 percent in 2007.
Last month’s squid prices ranged from USD 1.55 to 1.65 per pound for 3- to 5-inch tubes and tentacles and USD 1.95 to 2.05 for 5-8s, f.o.b. Mid-Atlantic. Tubes only, 3 to 5 inches, cost USD 1.95 to 2.05 while 5-8s were tagged between USD 2.60 to 2.70. Rings only ran USD 2.45 to 2.55 and rings and tentacles went for USD 2.30 to 2.40. Both 4- to 5 and 5- to 6-ounce and squid steaks ran between USD 2.70 to 2.80.