Fish and Seafood Trends in the U.S.

Date: June 28, 2013
Pages: 198
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Fish and Seafood Trends in the U.S.
Marketing Abstract for “Fish and Seafood Trends in the U.S.”

The fish and seafood industry is at an odd crossroads. Dollar sales are up, yet unit sales and volume sales are down. Consumers look to fish and seafood as a healthier source of protein than meat and poultry yet they worry more about spoilage and contamination of fish than they do of meat. In addition, marketers and retailers remain wary of aquaculture products even as they are urged by government and non-governmental agencies and marketers, retailers and foodservice operators to be concerned about the sustainability of major fish and seafood species.

Despite all the contradictions, Packaged Facts estimates that total retail sales of fish and seafood products were over $14.7 billion in 2012, up from $13.3 billion in 2008. The growth in dollar sales was offset by declines in both unit sales and volume sales in most retail fish and seafood categories with the exceptions of the frozen fish/seafood segment (which includes both prepared and non-prepared fish and seafood products) and frozen raw shrimp.

The recessionary economy experienced in the 2008 to 2012 period takes the blame for the unit and volume sales slowdown. Consumer use of private label alternatives to branded fish and seafood products took a giant leap forward between 2008 and 2012, going from less than four percent to over 30 percent in the four-year period as shoppers watched their budgets.

Going forward, the pace and robustness of the recovery will determine how overall sales improve for fish and seafood and which of the various categories will enjoy the most growth. Packaged Facts projects that the retail market for fish and seafood will grow to $17.1 billion by 2017 with the overall CAGR for the retail fish and seafood market is projected to be about 3.1 percent through the period.

Scope and Methodology

“Fish and Seafood Trends in the U.S.” covers the market for fish and seafood products sold through all types of retail outlets, including supermarkets, discount stores and supercenters, warehouse clubs, and mass merchandisers, as well as convenience stores, drugstores, health and natural food stores, dollar stores, farms and farmers markets. The markets for fresh, refrigerated, frozen, and shelf-stable fish and seafood, in both processed and unprocessed forms are covered, as well as their usage in the foodservice industry.

Market estimates within this report were based on both public and syndicated data sources. Packaged Facts has analyzed available sales and trend data, together with information pertaining to those products that move through unmonitored outlets, to estimate the total meat and poultry market size.
Chapter 1: Executive Summary

Scope of Report
  Scope of Market and Product Coverage
  Methodology
  Sales and Market Size
  Consumer Use Data
  Product Information
The Market
  Fish and Seafood in American Life
  Market Participants
  Product Distribution
Regulation
  Government Agencies
  Trade Associations
Market Size
  Fish and Seafood Retail Sales Topped $14.7 Billion in 2012
  Table 1-1: Fish and Seafood Retail Sales 2008–2012 (in millions $) Unit and Volume Sales Down
  Table 1-2: IRI-Tracked Unit and Volume Sales of Fish and Seafood: By Category, Percent Change 2012 vs. 2008
Market Trends
  Recession Dominates Market Development
  Private Label Leaps Upward in Fish and Seafood Market
  Table 1-3: Private Label Share of Fish and Seafood Sales, 2012 vs. 2008
  Health Concerns Rise in Importance
  Choosing Fresh Fish Over Meat or Poultry
  Table 1-4: Tendency to Choose Fresh Fish Over Meat/Poultry for Healthfulness, June 2013 (percent of consumers)
Market Forecast
  Market to Top $17 Billion by 2017
  Table 1-5: Fish and Seafood Retail Sales 2012–2017 (in millions $)
The Competitive Environment
  Billion Dollar Companies Lead Market
  Figure 1-1: Shares of Shelf-Stable Fish and Seafood Product Sales, 2012
  Figure 1-2: Shares of Frozen Fish and Seafood Product Sales, 2012
  Figure 1-3: Shares of Refrigerated Fish and Seafood Product Sales, 2012
Product Trends
  Products Targeted to Most Eager Consumers
  Convenience Drives Product Development
Retail and Foodservice Trends The Consumer
  Consumer Have Many Concerns
  Figure 1-4: U.S. Households Consuming Fish and Seafood Products, Fall 2008 and Fall 2012, by Product Category (percent of U.S. households) . 12

Chapter 2: Market Overview Key Points

Fish and Seafood in American Life High Level of Consumption
  Figure 2-1: Per Capita Consumption of Fish/Seafood by Type,2009-2011
Types of Fish and Shellfish Consumed
  Formats
  Figure 2-2: U.S. Households Consuming Fish and Seafood Products,Fall 2008 and Fall 2012, by Product Category (Percent of U.S.Households)
Market Participants
Fish and Seafood Distribution
  Vertical Integration
Key Issues
  Consolidation
  Sustainability
  Aquaculture
  Food Safety
    Packaged Facts National Consumer Survey
  Table 2-1: Spoilage/Contamination Issues as a Deterrent to Purchasing of Fresh Fish/Seafood, June 2013 (percent of consumers)
  Table 2-2: Spoilage/Contamination Issues as a Deterrent to Purchasing of Fresh Meat/Poultry, June 2013 (percent of consumers)
  GMO and Seafood
  Ending Labeling Fraud
Fish and Seafood Regulation
  At the Federal Level
    Office of Sustainable Fisheries
  Other Relevant Government Agencies
    The United States Fish and Wildlife Service
    The National Fish Hatchery System
    NOAA Seafood Inspection Program
    Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
  State and Regional Organizations
    Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute
    Chesapeake Bay Seafood Industries Association
    Hawaii Seafood Council
    Louisiana Seafood Promotion & Marketing Board (www.louisianaseafood.com)
    New York Seafood Council
    Oregon Dungeness Crab Commission
  Industry Associations
    International Coalition of Fisheries Associations
    National Fisheries Institute
    Seafood Products Association
  Non-Governmental Research and Certification Organizations
    Aquaculture Certification Council
    Aquaculture Stewardship Council
    Friends of the Sea
    Gulf of Maine Research Institute
    Marine Stewardship Council

Chapter 3: Market Size and Trends Key Points

Market Size
  Fish and Seafood Retail Sales Topped $14.7 Billion in 2012
  Table 3-1: Fish and Seafood Retail Sales 2008–2012 (in millions $)
    Unit and Volume Sales Down
  Table 3-2: IRI-Tracked Unit Sales of Fish and Seafood: By Category, 2012 vs. 2008
  Table 3-3: IRI-Tracked Volume Sales of Fish and Seafood: By Category, 2012 vs. 2008 (in millions of pounds)
  Mixed Recovery for Fish and Seafood
    Fresh Fish and Seafood Improve
  Table 3-4: Relative Frequency of Raw Fish/Seafood Purchases,June 2013 (percent of consumers)
    Fresh Fish Has Edge Over Frozen as Healthy Food
  Table 3-5: Perceived Healthfulness of Fresh Fish/Seafood vs. Frozen,June 2013 (percent of consumers)
    Fresh Fish Has Edge Over Frozen in Taste
  Table 3-6: Taste Preferences: Fresh Fish/Seafood vs. Frozen,June 2013 (percent of consumers)
    Shelf-Stable Unit Sales Slow
    Raw Shrimp a Bright Spot in Frozen Fish and Seafood
    Volume Savings Seen in Refrigerated Segment
  Table 3-7: IRI-Tracked Unit Sales of Fish and Seafood: By Category, 2012 vs. 2011 and 2012 vs. 2008
  Table 3-8: IRI-Tracked Volume Sales of Fish and Seafood: By Category, 2012 vs. 2008 (in millions of pounds)
Market Share by Category
  Fresh Shellfish Tops All Segments
  Figure 3-1: Fish and Seafood Market Shares by Category, 2012
  Shellfish Outgains Fin Fish in Fresh Category
  Table 3-9: Retail Fresh Fish and Seafood Sales by 2008–2012 (in millions $)
  Modest Sales Gains for Shelf-Stable Products
  Table 3-10: Retail Shelf-Stable Fish and Seafood Sales by 2008–2012 (in millions $)
  Prepared Fish Segment Tops Frozen Fish and Seafood Category
  Table 3-11: Retail Frozen Fish and Seafood Sales by 2008–2012(in millions $)
Market Trends
  The Recession and Market Shifts
    Survey Backs Discount Shopping Trend
  Table 3-12: Purchase a Lot of Groceries On Sale or Promotion
  Figure 3-2: Looked for Information on Sales and/or Specials for
    Most Recent Grocery Shopping Trip
    Survey Backs Private Label Switch Trend
  Table 3-13: Opinions on Private Label (percent)
  Private Label Leaps Upward in Fish and Seafood Market
  Table 3-14: Private Label Share of Fish and Seafood Sales, 2012 vs. 2008
  Health Concerns Rise in Importance
  Table 3-15: Grocery Product Manufacturers Should Do More to
  Help Consumers Eat More Healthily (percent)
    Mixed Interest in Nutritionally Enhanced Foods
  Table 3-16: Preference for Nutritionally Enhanced Food and Beverage Products (percent)
  Resistance to Processed Foods
  Table 3-17: Resistance to Highly Processed Foods (percent)
  Food Safety Concerns of Consumers
  Table 3-18: Ingredient and Labeling Interest When Shopping (percent)
  Choosing Fresh Fish Over Meat or Poultry
  Table 3-19: Tendency to Choose Fresh Fish Over Meat/Poultry for Healthfulness, June 2013 (percent of consumers)
  Vegan Seafood Substitutes Are Launched
  Table 3-20: Frequency of Meatless Meals, June 2013
  (percent of consumers)
  Illustration 3-1: Sophie’s Kitchen Gluten-Free Vegan Seafood Substitutes
  Demographic Shifts Impacting the Market
Market Forecast
  Market to Top $17 Billion by 2017
    Marketing Support Aids Fresh Fish Growth
    Frozen Fills in for Fresh
    Refrigerated Gains a Signal of Economic Improvement
    Frozen Prepared Fish and Seafood Sales Are Slow to Grow
    Shelf-Stable Remains Stable
  Table 3-21: Fish and Seafood Retail Sales 2012–2017 (in millions $)
Opportunities for Growth
  Waiting on the Recovery
  Collective Industry Advertising
  Addressing Sustainability
  Table 3-22: Importance of Sustainability/Environmental Issues
    When Making Meat/Poultry/Seafood Purchasing Decisions,
    June 2013 (percent of consumers)
  Illustration 3-2: Sustainable Seafood Message from Gulf of Maine and Marine Stewardship Council
    Emerging Aquaculture
    True Identity
    Social Networking
    Fish and Seafood Can Leverage Locavore Movement

Chapter 4: Competitive Trends Key Points

The Competitive Environment
Challenges to Identifying Market Leaders
Leading Marketers
  Leading Companies are “Source” Companies
  “Source” Company Snapshots
    American Seafoods Group
    Aqua Star
    Beaver Street Fisheries
    Bumble Bee Foods
    Clearwater Seafoods
    Cooke Aquaculture
    Dongwon Industries (StarKist)
    Eastern Fish Co.
    Harbor Seafood
    High Liner Foods
    Icicle Seafoods
    Marine Harvest Group
    Maruha Nichiro Group
    Mazzetta Company
    Nippon Suisan USA
    Ocean Beauty Seafoods
    Orion Seafood International
    Pacific Seafoods Group/ Dulcich, Inc.
    Red Chamber Group
    Thai Union International/ Chicken of the Sea
    Tri-Marine International
    Trident Seafoods
  Shelf-Stable Fish and Seafood Leaders
  Figure 4-1: Shares of Shelf-Stable Fish and Seafood Product Sales, 2012
    Bumble Bee Foods
    StarKist
    Chicken of the Sea
    Crown Prince
    JFE Shoji Trade America (Geisha Brand)
    Ocean Beauty
    Peter Pan
  Refrigerated Fish and Seafood Leaders
  Figure 4-2: Shares of Refrigerated Fish and Seafood Product Sales, 2012
    Trans-Ocean Products
    Vita Foods
    Ocean Beauty Seafoods
    Louis Kemp (Trident Seafoods)
    Acme Smoked Fish
    Ducktrap River Fish Farm (Marine Harvest Group)
    Seafood America
    Table of Contents Fish & Seafood Trends in the U.S.
    vi © Packaged Facts June 2013
    North Coast Seafoods
    Phillips Foods
    Chicken of the Sea
    Baltimore Crab Company
    Coast Seafoods
    Cedarlane Natural Foods, Inc.
    CFE International
    Salmolux
    Shining Ocean
    Sonoma Seafoods (Nippon Suisan)
  Frozen Fish and Seafood Leaders
  Figure 4-3: Shares of Frozen Fish and Seafood Product Sales, 2012
  Category Leaders
    Slade Gorton
    Pinnacle Foods
    Beaver Street Fisheries
    Great American Seafood Imports Co. (Southwind Foods)
    Rich-Seapak
    Maple Leaf International
    Aqua Star
    Tastee Choice
    Great Fish Company
Competitive Issues and Trends
  A Tightening Market
    Fewer Start-Up Opportunities
  Table 4-1: Founding Dates of Leading Fish and Seafood Category Participants
    Ongoing Consolidation
  Table 4-2: Growth Activity of Selected Leading Fish and Seafood Category Participants
  Competing at Point-of-Purchase
    Packaging
    Convenience/Value-Added/Single-Serve
    Better-For-You
    Environmentally Responsible/Sustainable/Ethical Practices/Locavore
    Price/Value
    Foodies/Novelty/Ethnic

Chapter 5: Product Trends and Opportunities Key Points

Products Targeted to Most Eager Consumers
Fish and Seafood Marketers Cater to Foodies
  Table 5-1: Foodie Tendencies (percent)
  Illustration 5-1: Sea Best Signature (Beaver Street Fisheries)
  Illustration 5-2: Clearwater Scallops & Sauce (Clearwater Seafoods Ltd)
  Illustration 5-3: Gorton’s Simply Bake (Gorton’s)
  Illustration 5-4: Phillips Seafood Skillet Meals (Phillips Foods, Inc.)
  Illustration 5-5v SeaSations Fish Fillets (StarKist Co.)
  Illustration 5-6: FPI FireRoaster (Fishery Products International/ High Liner Foods)
Convenience Drives Product Development
  Illustration 5-7: Acme Wild Smoked Salmon with Cream Cheese Crepes (Acme Smoked Fish Corp.; Crepini)
  Illustration 5-8: Cheese Crepes (Acme Smoked Fish Corp.; Crepini)
    Chicken of the Sea No Drain Tuna (Chicken of the Sea)
  Illustration 5-9: Phillips Soup for One (Phillips Foods, Inc.)
  Illustration 5-10: StarKist Tuna Creations (StarKist Co.)
  Illustration 5-11: SteamWell Seafoods Sockeye Salmon with Tuscan Herb Sauce (Orca Bay Foods)
  Illustration 5-12: Wholey Seafood Boil in the Bag Seafood Entrées(Wholey Seafood)
Sustainability, Ethical Practices Gain Traction
    Importance of Sustainability to Consumers
  Table 5-2: Interest in Environmental Issues When Choosing Food Products (percent)
    Importance of GMO to Consumers
  Table 5-3: Importance of Non-GMO Labeling on Grocery Purchases, June 2013 (percent of consumers)
    Prevalence of Farmed Fish in Foodservice
  Tilapia Continues to Thrive as Aquaculture Does
    Illustration 5-13: Heart of the Ocean (American Pride Seafoods)
    Illustration 5-14: Gorton’s Skillet Crisp (Gorton’s)
    Illustration 5-15: Mrs. Paul’s/Van de Kamp’s ParchmentBake tilapia fillets (Pinnacle Foods Group)
    Illustration 5-16: SeaSations Seafood Entrees (StarKist)
New Product Positioning
  Table 5-4: Selected New Fish and Seafood Products:Fresh/Refrigerated, 2011-2012
  Table 5-5: Selected New Fish and Seafood Products:Frozen, 2011-2012
  Table 5-6: Selected New Fish and Seafood Products:Shelf Stable, 2011-2012
  Table 5-7: Selected New Fish and Seafood Products:Foodservice, 2011-2012

Chapter 6: Retail/Foodservice Trends Key Points

Similar Challenges and Solutions for Retail and Foodservice
  Convergence of Customers
  Table 6-1: Use of Seafood Restaurants and Retail Purchase of Fish/Seafood Products, 2012 (Index of U.S. households visiting selected restaurants)
  Seafood Needs Better Marketing for Retail and Foodservice
  Retailers and Foodservice Operators Also Cooperate in Sustainability Efforts
Retail Trends
  Seafood a Positive Department for Retailers
  Table 6-2: Importance of Fresh Meat/Seafood in Choosing a Grocery Store, June 2013 (percent of consumers)
    Fresh Prepared a Lure for Consumers
  Table 6-3: Importance of Convenience in Fresh Fish/Seafood Purchases, June 2013 (percent of consumers)
    But Consumers Do Know How to Cook
  Table 6-4: Confidence Regarding Preparation of Fresh Fish/Seafood, June 2013 (percent of consumers)
  Rising Prices Are Key Retail Issue
    Holding the Price Line
  Table 6-5: Expense as a Deterrent to Purchasing of Fresh Fish/Seafood, June 2013 (percent of consumers)
    Grocery Budgets Determine Product Choices
  Table 6-6: Average Weekly Grocery Expenditures for Fish and Seafood, by Type, 2012 (index of U.S. households using fish/seafood)
    Upgrading and Educating to Drive New Sales
  Value-Added and Meal Solutions Adding to Sales
  Pitching Sustainability
    Greenpeace Honors Retailers
  Illustration 6-1: Greenpeace 2013 Seafood Retailer Scorecard
    Range of Sustainability Approvals
  Many Retailers Rejecting Genetically Modified Seafoods
    Local Sourcing and Freshness
  Private Label Lines Including Seafood
  Table 6-7: Average Weekly Grocery Expenditures, by Use of Private Label Fish/Seafood, 2012 (index of U.S. households using fish/seafood)
  Seasonal Marketing Picks Up for Fish and Seafood
  Independent Fish Stores Soldier On
Foodservice Trends
  Strong Sales in 2012 for Seafood Chains
    Uneven Performances by Individual Chains
  Table 6-8: Household Use of Selected Seafood Restaurants:2008, 2010, and 2012 (percent of U.S. households)
  Table 6-9: Selected Demographic Indicators for Use of Red Lobster Restaurant, 2012 (index of U.S. households)
  Table 6-10: Selected Demographic Indicators for Use of Joe’s Crab Shack Restaurant, 2012 (index of U.S. households)
  Table 6-11: Selected Demographic Indicators for Use of Long John Silver’s Restaurant, 2012 (index of U.S. households)
  Seafood Should Promote More Gains in 2013
  New Seafood Chains Emerge as Older Chains Regain Footing
  But Not All Succeed
  Seafood Turning Up in Wider Variety of Foodservice Venues
  Potential Increase for Seafood in Institutional Foodservice
  Clothing and Department Store Seafood Outlets
  Seafood in Non-Seafood Chains
  Illustration 6-2: Crab and Avocado Stack (Outback Steakhouse)
  Illustration 6-3: Seafood Mixed Grill (Outback Steakhouse)
  New Products Buoy Market
  Table 6-12: Recent New Product Finalists in the International Boston
    Seafood Show’s Seafood Excellence Awards, 2011-2013
  Illustration 6-4: Prawn Lollipops (Dish Hospitality)
  Illustration 6-5: Shrimp & Grits Cakes (Handy International)
  Illustration 6-6: Asiago and Artichoke Crab Flatbread (Phillips Foods)
  Illustration 6-7: Salmon Fillets with Chili Lime & Ginger Dressing(The Saucy Fish Co.)
    Competition Drives New Options
  Sustainability in Foodservice
  Illustration 6-8: McDonald's Packaging Featuring Marine Stewardship Council's Ecolabel
  Finding the Price/Value Balance Point
  Illustration 6-9: Captain D’s “Full Meal Deals”

Chapter 7: Consumer Trends Key Points

Note on Simmons Consumer Data
Consumer Health Concerns Regarding Seafood
Health Benefits of Fish
  Pescetarians
  Fresh Fish Consumers Show Higher Health Concerns
  Table 7-1: Health Attitudes of Consumers Using Fresh Fish/Seafood,2012 (index of U.S. Consumers)
  Table 7-2: Health Attitudes of Consumers Using Frozen Fish/Seafood,2012 (index of U.S. Consumers)
  Health Concerns Not Uniform for All Seafood Products
  Table 7-3: Health Attitudes of Consumers Using Frozen Prepared Seafood, by Kinds Used Most Often, 2012 (Index of U.S.Consumers)
  Table 7-4: Health Attitudes of Consumers Using Frozen Prepared Seafood, by Kinds Also Used, 2012 (Index of U.S. Consumers)
    Users of Tuna in Pouches Have Greater Health Concerns Than Canned Users
    Users of Higher Grade Tuna Express Greater Health Concerns
  Table 7-5: Health Attitudes of Consumers Using Tuna (Can or Pouch), 2012 (Index of U.S. Consumers)
  Table 7-6: Health Attitudes of Consumers Using Tuna (Can or Pouch), 2012 (Index of U.S. Consumers)
    Users of Lower Sodium Tuna Express Greater Health Concerns
    Mixed Results on Health Concerns Among Oil and Water Packed Users
  Table 7-7: Health Attitudes of Consumers Using Tuna (Can or Pouch), 2012 (Index of U.S. Consumers)
  Table 7-8: Health Attitudes of Consumers Using Tuna (Can or Pouch), 2012 (Index of U.S. Consumers)
  Fresh Fish and Seafood Consumers Show “Foodie” Tendencies
  Table 7-9: Food Attitudes/Opinions of Consumers Using Fish and Seafood, by Product Category, 2012 (Index of U.S. Consumers)
Most Seafood Consumer Segments in Normal Range
Regional Preferences Stand Out
  Table 7-10: User Demographics Focus: Consumers of Fish/Seafood, by Product Category and Nielsen Region, 2012 (Index of U.S. Consumers)
Consumer Product Preferences – Fresh Fish and Seafood
  Table 7-11: User Demographics Focus: Consumers of Fresh Fish/Seafood, 2012 (Index of U.S. Consumers)
    Price A Major Concern in Fresh Fish Category
  Table 7-12: Retail Price Per Pound of Different Types of Meat,Poultry and Fish/Seafood, June, 2013
Consumer Product Preferences – Frozen Fish and Seafood
  Table 7-13: User Demographics Focus: Consumers of Frozen Fish/Seafood, 2012 (Index of U.S. Consumers)
Consumer Product Preferences – Frozen Prepared Fish and Seafood
  Table 7-14: User Demographics Focus: Consumers of Frozen Prepared Seafood, 2012 (Index of U.S. Consumers)
  Frozen Prepared – Breaded Clams
  Table 7-15: User Demographics Focus: Consumers of Frozen Prepared Seafood, Breaded Clams, 2012 (Index of U.S. Consumers)
  Frozen Prepared – Fish Cakes
  Table 7-16: User Demographics Focus: Consumers of Frozen Prepared Seafood, Fish Cakes, 2012 (Index of U.S. Consumers)
  Frozen Prepared – Fish Fillets
  Table 7-17: User Demographics Focus: Consumers of Frozen Prepared Seafood, Fish Fillets, 2012 (Index of U.S. Consumers)
  Frozen Prepared – Fish Sticks
  Table 7-18: User Demographics Focus: Consumers of Frozen Prepared Seafood, Fish Sticks, 2012 (Index of U.S. Consumers)
  Frozen Prepared – Shrimp
  Table 7-19: User Demographics Focus: Consumers of Frozen Prepared Seafood, Shrimp, 2012 (Index of U.S. Consumers)
Consumer Product Preferences – Shelf-Stable Tuna
  Shelf-Stable Tuna – Canned vs. Pouched
  Table 7-20: User Demographics Focus: Consumers of Shelf-Stable Tuna, by Form Eaten Most Often, 2012 (index of U.S. consumers)

Appendix Selected Companies/Brands

Selected Retailers
Selected Private Label/Foodservice Suppliers
Selected Fish/Seafood Restaurant Chains

Vertical IntegrationMost of the larger fishing companies tend to contract with distribution services to facilitatetheir products getting to market. Some of the larger industry participants, however, haveopted to directly handle the distribution of their products by owning a fleet of containervessels to carry their products to international ports as well as fleets of refrigerated andfreezer trucks to take their products to inland domestic markets around the U.S.

  • Given the trend toward consolidation in the market, it is not unlikely that there willbe further vertical integration among the larger companies wanting to control allaspects of their operation from harvesting the seafood to direct-to-store delivery(DSD).
  • Even if they don’t own distribution directly, marketers tend to exercise a great deal ofoversight of the process. Because it is easy for fresh and frozen products to go bad ifnot handled properly, marketers need to be sure that they have trustworthy partners inorder to protect their own reputations. Long term relationships are not unusual, oncea solid partner has been found.

The fish and seafood industry has experienced a significant degree of consolidation within thepast few years, with major companies acquiring smaller, successful niche operations on aregular basis. Given that there are very few new start-ups appearing in this industry (as notedin Chapter 4, Competitive Trends), it would appear that the market is headed towards asituation in which there are a few very large vertically integrated companies in ongoingacquisition mode with fewer and fewer small and mid-sized companies and fewerindependent distributors.

  • The upside is that the economies of scale that can result from this could eventuallylead to lower prices for the consumer.
  • Fewer, larger companies may also be better able to address issues such assustainability than a more diversified industry with small and mid-sized companiesthat are inclined to resist harvest restrictions in order to survive. 

The material was prepared in July, 2013.

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