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Monthly Catfish Processing Report

US - Catfish processing was down 16 per cent from last year, says the latest report from the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS).

Farm-raised catfish processed during September 2007 totaled 39.5 million pounds round weight, down 16 percent from September 2006. This total is the lowest reported September round weight processed since September 1996 when 38.8 million pounds were processed. The average price paid to producers was 69.7 cents per pound for September 2007, down 3.4 cents from last month and 13.5 cents below a year ago.

Net pounds of processed fish sold during September 2007 totaled 20.4 million pounds, down 8 percent from the comparable month in 2006. The total end of the month inventory decreased 1 percent from last month and was down 2 percent from a year ago. Sales of fresh fish, at 7.45 million pounds, were down slightly from September 2006 and represented 36 percent of total sales. Frozen fish sales, at 13.0 million pounds, were down 12 percent from a year ago and accounted for the remaining 64 percent of total fish sales. Sales of whole fish represented 18 percent of the total fish sold, fillets accounted for 61 percent, and the remaining 21 percent were mostly steaks, nuggets, and value added products.

Prices down, too
The September 2007 average price received by processors for total fresh fish was $2.37 per pound, down 20 cents from last year. Prices for fresh whole fish were $1.65 per pound, down 13 cents from September 2006. Prices for fresh fillets were down 19 cents from a year ago at $3.03 per pound. Total frozen fish averaged $2.34 per pound, down 19 cents from September 2006. Prices for frozen whole dressed fish were down 10 cents at $2.12 and frozen fillets at $2.79 per pound were down 24 cents from a year ago.

Freshwater imports for consumption of Ictalurus spp., Pangasius spp., and other catfish of the order Siluriformes for August 2007 totaled 8.84 million pounds, down 2 percent from the amount imported in August 2006. Imports were from Brazil, Cambodia, Chile, China, Indonesia, Spain, Thailand, and Vietnam. The Ictalurus spp. imports totaled 80 thousand pounds, which were from Brazil and China.

Fresh boneless catfish fillet exports totaled 77.6 thousand pounds, with 51.6 thousand pounds going to Canada and the rest to the Netherlands. No exports of frozen, boneless catfish fillets were reported for August 2007.

Import and export data are compiled by the US Census Bureau.





To view the full report, including tables, please click here

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