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Monthly Catfish Processing Report

US - Catfish Processing Down 6 Percent, report the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS).

Catfish Processing Down 6 from Last Year

Farm-raised catfish processed during January 2007 totaled 47.8 million pounds round weight, down 6 percent from January 2006. The average price paid to producers was 83.9 cents per pound for January 2007, up 0.1 cents from last month and 11.2 cents above a year ago.

Net pounds of processed fish sold during January 2007 totaled 24.0 million pounds, down 12 percent from the comparable month in 2006. The total end of the month inventory increased 2 percent from last month and was up 38 percent from a year ago. Sales of fresh fish, at 7.97 million pounds, were down 17 percent from January 2006 and represented 33 percent of total sales. Frozen fish sales, at 16.0 million pounds, were down 10 percent from a year ago and accounted for the remaining 67 percent of total fish sales. Sales of whole fish represented 16 percent of the total fish sold, fillets accounted for 60 percent, and the remaining 24 percent were mostly steaks, nuggets, and value added products.

The January 2007 average price received by processors for total fresh fish was $2.58 per pound, up 31 cents from last year. Prices for fresh whole fish were $1.79 per pound, up 25 cents from January 2006. Prices for fresh fillets were up 43 cents at $3.28 per pound. Total frozen fish averaged $2.48 per pound, up 21 cents from January 2006. Prices for frozen whole fish were up 9 cents at $2.09 and frozen fillets at $3.06 per pound were up 39 cents from a year ago.

Freshwater imports of Ictalurus spp., Pangasius spp., and other catfish of the order Siluriformes for December 2006 totaled 8.90 million pounds, up significantly from the amount imported in December 2005. Imports were from Brazil, Cambodia, China, China - Hong Kong, Indonesia, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam. The Ictalurus spp. imports totaled 3.42 million pounds, which were from Brazil and China.

Fresh fillet exports totaled 79.3 thousand pounds, with 62.4 thousand pounds going to Canada and the rest to the Netherlands and Nigeria. Exports of frozen, boneless catfish fillets reported for December 2006 totaled 4.9 thousand pounds, of which all went to Canada.

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

To view the full report, including tables, please click here (PDF Format)

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