Kontali Shrimp: EU Market Update, June 2024

Published by SIPA

This report, by Kontali Shrimp, dropped into my inbox.


by Sander Visch

The market in Europe is improving over last year, as total shrimp import reveals a 2% growth during Q1. Part of the growth is explained by a more positive market outlook, but also prices have been going down throughout Q1.


Whereas December still marked an average price point of $6.90/kg, March was already $0.30 lower. With this drop, and only a mild uptick over last year in volume the import value reached just below 900 million dollar, 5% below Q1 2023.

EU import volume of shrimp in tonnes

In Q1, Ecuador was the largest supplier to the EU market with an import volume of 36,600 tonnes. While this was a 17% decrease from Q4, it was still 12% up compared YoY. Argentina became the second largest supplier to the EU in Q1 with a total volume of 18,400 tonnes, consisting mainly of Muelleri. This was 38% down from Q4 and 5% higher YoY. The reduction is mainly ralted to the harvest season of Muelleri.


India became the third largest supplier to the EU in Q1, with 15,400 tonnes, 13% down from Q4 and 18% down compared to the same quarter last year. The slowdown of India is partly the effect of the production seasonality but it seems more to an extend that importers moving toward Ecuador as a supplier.


However next to Ecuador, a steady and upcoming supplier is Venezuela, which during Q1 supplied 11.830, the highest volume so far. The growth of Venezuala compared to Q1 2023 was 61%, and 25% higher then during Q4. Import volumes from Vietnam remain relative stable at 10.200 tonnes, a 14% decline from Q4 but an uptick of 10% over Q1 2023.


Import volumes of frozen shrimp products under HS 030617 were up 17% during Q1 compared to Q4. Reaching a volume of 105,600 tonnes, it was 5% up from the same period in the previous year, The import volume strengthened in October and November to 43,200 tonnes and 49,700 tonnes before it declined to 34,200 tonnes in December. The largest supplier of frozen shrimp products under HS 030617 was Ecuador, with 43,800 tonnes, followed by Argentina with 29,500 tonnes, and India, with 17,100 tonnes.


For Value-added products under HS 160521/29, total import volume reached 15,300 tonnes, down 21% compared to Q4 and 13% below the same period last year. The largest supplier of products under these HS codes was Vietnam with a total volume of 4,900 tonnes during Q4. This was 14% up YoY. The second largest supply of value-added products under these HS codes to the EU market came from Greenland.


As mentioned in our previous update, market and consumer prices are stabilising, and inflation on Fish and Seafood dropped further to reach 2.1% in May. Since March, an even more substantial reduction in inflation was observed for frozen seafood, with a negative inflation rate of 0.9% in May.


With this the market outlook is quite positive and we expect a rather stable market demand compared to previous years. Demand form the end consumer and foodservice typically rises during the European summer, and shrimp are often enjoyed at barbecues and outdoor gatherings, this will clearing some inventory from Q1-Q2.


On the longer term, we expect the imports to increase again after the European summer holidays. This trend was less visible last year due to high inventories, but this year around we expect importer to act as usual and prepare for the end of the year season. Given the production dynamics in the supplying nations, it is foreseen that (again) LaTam countries will grow their supply to the EU and a reduction in market share from Asian suppliers.