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Aquaculture Output Drops

MALTA - Gross output of the aquaculture industry in 2008 dropped to 81.7 million, going back to 2006 levels.

The gross output of the aquaculture industry, comprising fish farming and other output, amounted to €81.7 million, a fall of 37.4 per cent from e130.5 million in 2007. According to The Malta Independent Online, this decline was in part due to a negative change in stocks of fish.

A fall of 10.1 per cent in the value of tuna farming exports was also a contributing factor to this drop.

During the year under review, sales of fish amounted to 6,727 tonnes, a decrease of 21.7 per cent when compared to the previous year. By contrast, the average price of fresh fish sold registered a rise of 16.0 per cent. However, this was not enough to compensate for the drop in sales, which went down by 9.2 per cent, from e103.2 million in 2007 to e93.8 million in 2008.

When compared to 2007, intermediate consumption fell by 20.6 per cent on account of a decline in the value of purchases of live fish and fingerlings, and variable production costs. These fell by 41.5 per cent and 13.1 per cent respectively. The drop in the value of live fish and fingerlings purchased, representing 37.5 per cent of total intermediate consumption, was mainly due to a decrease in the volume of tuna purchased (-59.7 per cent). This decline was mitigated by an increase of 41.7 per cent in the average price per kilogram of tuna purchased.

the Fish Site Editor

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