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Alabama shrimp landings near historic levels

Staff Writer |
In February, more than 2.7 million pounds of shrimp was landed in the Gulf of Mexico, representing a 3 percent decline from the prior seventeen-year historic average for the month as NOAA’s Gulf of Mexico Data Management division.

In this regard, the Southern Shrimp Alliance (SSA) highlights that NOAA’s totals for February do not include any reporting for Louisiana because of an insufficient number of dealers reporting.

Nevertheless, even without any reported landings from Louisiana, total shrimp landed in the Gulf remained near historic levels because landings in Alabama last month (1.1 million pounds) were roughly three times the prior seventeen-year historic average for the month (0.4 million pounds).

For the year, the total volume of shrimp caught in the Gulf of Mexico (4.6 million pounds) is 32.8 percent below the prior seventeen-year historic average (6.9 million pounds).

However, as the SSA see it, this low total – attributable to a massive drop in reported Louisiana landings – may have little impact on annual landings, as the shrimp caught in the first two months of the year accounts for only between four and seven percent of the total volume of shrimp landed in the Gulf of Mexico each year.

The SSA stresses that for the sixth straight month, no ex-vessel prices were reported by NOAA for the eastern Gulf (the west coast of Florida). Ex-vessel prices reported for the northern (Alabama, Louisiana, and Mississippi) and western (Texas) Gulf were mixed compared to February of last year.

Dockside prices for U15 shrimp were reported to be higher in the western Gulf than last year, but lower in the northern Gulf.

Prices for smaller count size shrimp (31/35; 36/40; and 41/50) were reported to be slightly higher last month in the northern Gulf than in February 2017, while prices for the same count sizes in the western Gulf were reported to be lower than they were in February 2017.

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