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Catfish Processing Down 4 Percent from Last Year

US - Farm-raised catfish processed during August 2008 totaled 41.0 million pounds round weight, down 4 percent from August 2007. The average price paid to producers was 82.7 cents per pound for August 2008, up 0.9 cents from last month and 9.6 cents above a year ago.

Net pounds of processed fish sold during August 2008 totaled 20.9 million pounds, down 4 percent from the comparable month in 2007. The total end of the month inventory decreased 12 percent from last month and was down 7 percent from a year ago. Sales of fresh fish, at 7.13 million pounds, were down 5 percent from August 2007 and represented 34 percent of total sales.

Frozen fish sales, at 13.8 million pounds, were down 3 percent from a year ago and accounted for the remaining 66 percent of total fish sales. Sales of whole fish represented 17 percent of the total fish sold, fillets accounted for 61 percent, and the remaining 22 percent were mostly steaks, nuggets, and value added products.

The August 2008 average price received by processors for total fresh fish was $2.59 per pound, up 16 cents from last year. Prices for fresh whole fish were $1.74 per pound, up 4 cents from August 2007. Prices for fresh fillets were up 24 cents from a year ago at $3.32 per pound. Total frozen fish averaged $2.51 per pound, up 17 cents from August 2007. Prices for frozen whole dressed fish were down 2 cents at $2.14 per pound and frozen fillets at $2.98 per pound were up 18 cents from a year ago.

Freshwater imports for consumption of Ictalurus spp., Pangasius spp., and other catfish of the order Siluriformes for July 2008 totaled 8.67 million pounds, up 52 percent from the amount imported in July 2007. Imports were from Cambodia, Canada, China, Indonesia, Malaysia, Spain, Thailand, and Vietnam. The Ictalurus spp. imports totaled 1.20 million pounds, which were from Cambodia and Canada.

Fresh boneless catfish fillet exports totaled 52.1 thousand pounds, with 46.8 thousand pounds going to Canada and the rest going to the Netherlands. Exports of frozen boneless catfish fillets for July 2008 were 14.6 thousand pounds, all going to Italy.

Import and export data are compiled by the U.S. Census Bureau.

U. S. Catfish Processed

U. S. Average Grower Price

Further Reading

- You can view the full report by clicking here.

Ellen Hardy

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