Credit: PowerCore

Seafood sales “are on fire” across all retail categories, including online, and it’s likely to continue.

That’s according to new data presented this week at the National Fisheries Institute’s Global Marketing Conference and reported by SeafoodSource News.

In 2020, health concerns over the Covid pandemic pushed up U.S. frozen seafood sales by 35% to $7 billion, fresh sales rose 24.5% to $6.7 billion and shelf-stable products rose by 20.3% to nearly $3 billion.

And online “e-commerce” seafood sales tripled to top $1 billion.

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IRI, a world leader in market data, said sales at in-store fresh seafood counters jumped 28 percent to$ 871 million.

Salmon led all seafood in fresh sales, followed by crab and shrimp. Cod and halibut also made the top 10 list.

Crab sales reached an “unheard of” 60% growth last year, a spokeswoman said.

Shrimp was hands down the big winner in the frozen category with raw shrimp sales surging by 48%.

Shelf-stable salmon sales soared 30.3% to $286 million.

Despite the jaw-dropping numbers, market experts pointed to some red flags.

Baby Boomers were the biggest buyers of shelf-stable seafood and there is a need to engage with younger consumers, they said.

Also, frozen seafood sales skewed towards wealthier households with annual incomes above $100,000 pointing out a need to attract lower-income seafood buyers.

IRI predicts growth in all seafood categories will continue this year but cautioned the  “industry shouldn’t rest on its laurels.”

As Covid vaccinations increase, more Americans will be going out to eat and frozen sales – the biggest gains from stay at home and hunker down orders – could decline.

However, online seafood sales are likely to experience double-digit growth in 2021.

See the complete write-up by Seafood Source here —