Canadian mussel exports to U.S. up 10%
According to import data from the National Marine Fisheries Service, Canadian fresh blue cultured mussel exports grew by 10 percent in 2010, overtaking New Zealand mussels for the first time.
The value of the exports totaled USD 27.4 million last year, up from USD 26.7 million in 2009. Canada led mussel imports in 2010 with 47 percent of the market compared with 42 percent for New Zealand.
Exported to the United States year-round, the rising exports have been attributed to marketing efforts by the Mussel Industry Council of North America, which has promoted the healthful and sustainability aspects of the species.
“Surpassing New Zealand in mussels exported to the U.S. market is an important milestone for us,” said Terry Ennis, president of the Mussel Industry Council of North America. “For many years New Zealand has led in sales, importing frozen cooked mussels on the half shell. What we’re seeing now is the market respond to our product that is eco-friendly and available live and fresh all year round.”