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Tuna
Lower imports from traditional markets and canned tuna producers [November 2016]
During the first quarter of the year, fishing in the Western and Central Pacific improved. In the Eastern Pacific, skipjack catches improved while for yellowfin were worse. As a result, yellowfin prices grew more markedly in that region while skipjack prices increased only marginally.
In the Indian Ocean, fishing has been moderate with landings consisting primarily of skipjack. With slight weakening of skipjack prices in this side of the world, raw material inventories during the first quarter period in Thailand increased moderately both through imports as well as carriers arriving in Bangkok. From January-March 2016, the average import price of skipjack was 6.3% lower than last year's. Frozen tuna import volumes into Thailand increased by 8% to total 125 600 tonnes against 120 000 tonnes in the same period in 2015. However, import volumes of yellowfin and albacore declined by 35% and 28% respectively at 21 500 tonnes and 7 000 tonnes compared with the same period last year.
Fishing in the Atlantic Ocean continues at a low-to-moderate rate, while raw material inventories at local canneries are at low levels. Skipjack and yellowfin prices continue their upward trend due to short supplies from Indian and Atlantic Oceans.
Indonesia reported improved domestic catches of pole and h line caught skipjack since the first quarter of this year as a result of the government's measures to combat IUU fishing by foreign fishing vessels. Price of pole and line skipjack has a premium price at USD 1 700-1 800 per tonne, FOB Indonesia, which is USD 200 per tonne higher than purse seine caught skipjack. The main fishing areas for pole and line fishing are the eastern part of Indonesia, namely North Sulawesi, South of Sulawesi, Maluku and East Flores.
Canned tuna production in Ecuador, the largest supplier to the European market, was lower in May following the earthquake in mid-April. The canneries in Manta were kept closed for two weeks as many workers went back home to be with their family members following the quake. In addition, the port infrastructure at Manta was directly impacted, which made it impossible to land raw material for the canneries. Combined with a scarcity of tuna arrivals from the Eastern Pacific, this situation is pushing prices upwards.
Canned tuna market remained dormant in 2015 [August 2016]
Throughout 2015, overall supply of raw material tuna remained higher than the corresponding market demand for canned tuna. As a result, tuna packers in Southeast Asia, Ecuador and in the Western Indian Ocean held large inventories. Frozen skipjack prices fell to record low levels as did canned tuna prices. In December 2015, prices of frozen skipjack weakened to less than USD 1 000 per tonne, compared with USD 1 150 in the same month of 2014 and USD 1 400 in 2013. However, raw material imports into Thailand, the Philippines and China in 2015 did not increase compared with the previous year. Subsequently, fishing efforts reduced during the fourth quarter of 2015.

As of this writing, fishing in the Western and Central Pacific has also slowed due to poor weather. The US Tuna Treaty has been finalized and the US fleet is now allowed to resume fishing in the Western and Central Pacific. There has been a significant drop in landing activities in Thailand and Thai Canneries are reporting moderate-to-low inventories. Raw material supply is expected to be tight in the coming months.

Fishing in the Eastern Pacific has resumed but catches are poor. In Ecuador, raw material inventories are low and expected to be tight over the next few months.
Short supplies from the Indian and Atlantic Oceans have resulted in substantially higher raw material prices in Europe this year. Fishing in the Indian Ocean is moderate, with mainly skipjack being caught. Local canneries are holding good inventories of raw material. The FAD closure in the Atlantic Ocean ended on 1 March, but fishing has remained at a low-to-moderate level so far. Local canneries are holding moderate raw material inventories.

Prices for canned tuna remained weak during 2015 [March 2016]
As of December 2015, fishing in the Western and Central Pacific slowed down slightly while Thai canneries reported healthy raw material inventories.
With the end of seasonal FAD and 'veda' closures, tuna landings in the Pacific Ocean region improved beginning in late October. However, slow demand from tuna canners worldwide pushed skipjack prices below USD 1 000 per tonne in December 2015, compared with USD 1 150 in the same month of 2014 and USD 1 400 in 2013. Yellowfin prices have remained stable.
Fishing in the Atlantic Ocean continues at a moderate-to-good level while local canneries report healthy raw material inventories. A slight increase in demand has helped to raise European prices for whole tuna while prices for tuna loins have stayed firm. In general, frozen skipjack prices remained 15-20% lower in 2015 compared with 2014.
Weak demand for canned tuna in the USA and the EU has led to a significant decline in frozen raw material imports into Thailand, the world's largest tuna canning producer. Indeed, during January-September 2015, frozen tuna imports into Thailand were 20% lower at 574 382 tonnes (-140 800 tonnes) compared with the same period in 2014. However, imports of semi-processed cooked loins to Thailand increased by 12% compared with the same period in 2014. China, Viet Nam and Indonesia were the leading suppliers.
In contrast, during the review period of January-August 2015, total tuna raw material imports almost doubled to the Philippines at 84 115 tonnes compared with the same period last year. This growth took place despite a 27.6% decline in total Fillapino exports of canned tuna, which could be attributed to a strong domestic market for the product. Despite this general decline, Fillapino exports to the EU increased by 17% during this period facilitated by the lower tariff rate from the Philippines. The Phillippines also reported higher imports of yellowfin (+124%) at 30 000 tonnes, mostly meant for export processing of cooked loins to the EU as well as to Thailand.
Also during the first nine months of the year, frozen tuna imports into Ecuador totalled 43 554 tonnes, which is 2% less compared with the same period in 2014. Frozen yellowfin imports fell by 7%.
For export processing of cooked loins and canned tuna, China imported nearly 70 000 tonnes of frozen skipjack, yellowfin and albacore during this period, compared with over 61 000 tonnes during the same time period in 2014.
Lower tuna prices, particularly for skipjack, induced imports of cooked loins among European canners for processing higher value products. EU imports of cooked skipjack loins totaled 43 639 tonnes during January-August 2015.
Tuna Market Report - February 2010 [February 2010]

Recession impacts US tuna market

Canned fish is not immune to the effects of the recession. US orders for canned tuna products from the Philippines have slowed significantly; export from the Philippines dropped 12% in the first nine months of 2009. Ecuador’s export of tuna pouches to the US market dropped by 25% in the January to September 2009 period compared with the same period a year earlier.
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Tuna Market Report - Thailand - June 2009 [June 2009]

Thai canned tuna exports expand further

The reduced tariff quota on canned tuna, the so-called Cotonou compromise quota, for Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines ended in June 2008 and it was not renewed. Canned tuna is a key issue in EU-ASEAN discussions for a free trade agreement (FTA), and reduced tariff access to EU markets will come in the context of such an FTA.
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Thursday 23 February 2017
Top Info


Fish Info Network Directors meet at Conxemar, Vigo
In October each year the Spanish Association of Wholesalers, Importers, Manufacturers and Exporters of Fish products and Aquaculture (Conxemar) organizes the International Frozen Seafood Exhibition in Vigo, Spain.

Back to back with this event Conxemar jointly holds an international conference together with FAO. This year the conference was dedicated to cephalopods, a group of molluscs that includes squids, cuttlefishes, and octopus. The conference also provides the backdrop for various side events such as the Vigo dialogue on decent work in fisheries and aquaculture, and the meeting of the Fish Info Network (FIN).
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