Bill Webber of Cordova  

Alaska’s salmon catch is on its way to 205 million fish and by all reports, markets are set to buy all they can get. Here’s how global supplier Tradex of British Columbia sums it up. Spokesperson Rochelle Reierson —

“Our recommendation is to buy everything and anything you need or will need for your inventories – now. Stocks will deplete and prices will continue to rise.  If you require Salmon, now is the time to buy and stock up or you will be left out.”   

Reierson says any sockeye on the market quickly sold out.

“Processors are even buying in the open market to ensure product for their programs and with that, processors are also taking PO’s in advance of fishing and pricing is subject to catch.”

The same holds true for farmed salmon. The Covid pandemic caused “an explosion of salmon consumption” James Griffin, director of the Chilean Salmon Marketing Council, told Undercurrent News. He said that Americans are more excited than ever to buy salmon “and even though foodservice has returned and prices are way up, sales remain at a torrid pace.”

Griffin added that the entire salmon market is “unprecedented” describing it “like an inflated balloon that’s expanding exponentially across every supplier, whether it’s wild or farmed.”

Chile is the top importer of farmed Atlantic salmon to the U.S. followed by Canada and Norway.

© Cameron Karsten Photography for Grundens

The U.S. imported more than 450 million pounds of farmed salmon worth $2.1 billion from all sources in the first six months of this year, according to federal trade data. (205,927mt)

That’s equivalent to 57% of the total volume and 62% of total value for all of 2020.

Undercurrent said this past June, the average price paid for farmed salmon imports was $5.70 a pound, 24% higher than the average $4.60 paid the previous year.

Alaska provides 95% of the wild salmon purchased by Americans. But it’s share of the global salmon market is just 13% with farmed salmon production outnumbering wild harvests by nearly 3 to one.