OSLO: Norway’s seafood exports grew by 29 percent year-on-year in February to 6.8 billion Norwegian crowns ($784.96 million) as a weak currency and rising global demand for fish help drive sales, the country’s Seafood Council said on Thursday.
Year-to-date growth stood at 24 percent, the government agency added.
Exports by Norway’s extensive salmon farming industry represented 61 percent of overall seafood exports in February.
“A reduction in the supply of salmon at the beginning of the year, strong demand in our neighbouring markets and a favourable foreign currency situation are driving the price for salmon and consequently the value to new heights,” the Norwegian Seafood Council said.
The average price of salmon rose to 55.05 crowns per kilo from 42.17 crowns in same month last year while the volume fell 0.7 percent to 71,800 tonnes. France, Poland and Denmark were the biggest buyers of Norwegian salmon.
By contrast, the price of North Sea crude oil – Norway’s top export – suffers from a 70 percent drop since mid-2014.
Norway is the world’s top salmon exporter, with leading producers including Marine Harvest, Salmar, Leroy Seafood, Grieg Seafood and Norway Royal Salmon.
In other categories, exports of fresh cod rose 61 percent to a record 373 million crowns while crab exports jumped 317 percent to 83 million crowns.
The export of herring and mackerel rose by about 70 percent to a total of 477 million crowns while dried and salted cod, also known as clipfish, fell 20 percent in value to 205 million crowns.