Low salmon prices put Salmones Camanchaca in the red for second straight quarter

Salmones Camanchaca employees at a salmon farm.

Puerto Montt, Chile-based salmon farmer Salmones Camanchaca increased its Atlantic salmon harvest to 17,760 metric tons (MT) in Q3 2023, a 24 percent year-over-year increase, but the jump in production was not enough to keep the company from falling into the red for the second straight quarter.

“This was a very challenging quarter due to the weakness of global demand and its effects on prices, added to costs that included higher prices of food inputs, inflation on [prices of] services, and outbreaks of SRS [salmonid rickettsial septicemia] and Caligus that hurt the costs of fish harvested from two centers,” Salmones Camanchaca Vice President Ricardo García Holtz said.

The higher harvest volume did not fully translate into higher sales during the period, and the company’s Atlantic salmon sales volumes totaled 11,311 MT whole-fish equivalent (WFE) in the period, slipping 3.4 percent year over year. The lower sales, coupled with the company selling off frozen products which reduced inventory rotation, resulted in the company accumulating an inventory of more than 9,000 MT WFEat the end of the quarter.

The inventory surplus and lower sales, coupled with a 12.9 percent decrease in Atlantic salmon sales prices, led to its third-quarter revenue falling 14.5 percent year over year to USD 83 million (EUR 76.1 million). Year to date, the company’s operating revenue has reached USD 259.3 million (EUR 236.9 million), a 5 percent decrease compared to the same period of 2022. 

Cost of sales in Q3 2023, meanwhile, increased 10.5 percent year over year to USD 77.7 million (EUR 71.2 million), resulting in earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA) before fair-value adjustments of just USD 2.9 million (EUR 2.6 million), an 88.6 percent drop from Q3 2022.

Net losses for Q3 2023 reached USD 5.49 million (EUR 5.03 million), compared to USD 18.5 million (EUR 16.9 million) in net profits for the same quarter in 2022.

The company added in its earning report that its EBIT per kilogram of Atlantic salmon fell to USD 0.05 (EUR 0.04), compared to USD 1.78 (EUR 1.62) per kilogram in Q3 2022.

Salmones Camanchaca did not harvest coho salmon during the period as it is not in season, but sales volumes of that species jumped 307 percent when compared to last year, reaching 438 MT WFE.

However, the average price of its coho fell 24.3 percent during the quarter, dropping to ... 

Photo courtesy of Salmones Camanchaca

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