Seafood Product Preparation & Packaging

Industry Profile Report

Dive Deep into the industry with a 25+ page industry report (pdf format) including the following chapters

Industry Overview Current Conditions, Industry Structure, How Firms Operate, Industry Trends, Credit Underwriting & Risks, and Industry Forecast.

Call Preparation Call Prep Questions, Industry Terms, and Weblinks.

Financial Insights Working Capital, Capital Financing, Business Valuation, and Financial Benchmarks.

Industry Profile Excerpts

Industry Overview

The 450 seafood product preparation and packaging companies in the US process fish, shellfish, crustacea, seaweed, and other sea life into fresh, canned, dried, smoked and frozen foods, as well as bait and seaweed products. Processors are often located along coasts or rivers to speed access to fresh catches. Some firms process seafood on vessels or “floating factory ships”.

Health and Seasonality of Fisheries Supply

The seafood product preparation and packaging industry relies on healthy fisheries and is subject to limits on seasonal catches.

Meeting Health Regulations

NOAA’s Fisheries Seafood Inspection Program and the FDA inspect operations and ensure that the industry complies with food safety regulations.

Industry size & Structure
Industry Forecast
Seafood Product Preparation & Packaging Industry Growth
Source: Vertical IQ and Inforum

Recent Developments

Jan 23, 2024 - Seafood Prices Sink
  • The producer price index for seafood producers, which measures prices before reaching consumers, fell 2.6% in 2023, reversing gains in 2021 and 2022. Producer prices are declining amid falling seafood sales and volume at the retail level. Overall employment by seafood product producers plunged 28.4% in November compared to a year ago to the lowest level in a decade. Meanwhile, average wages paid by the food manufacturers climbed to a new high of $22.71 per hour in December.
  • Consumers fished for value when shopping for seafood in 2023, Seafood Source reports. But even a slowdown in inflation wasn’t enough to reverse a downward slide in sales across most categories of seafood last year. Year-end data from market research firm Circana shows more than half (55%) of seafood shoppers looked for sales and deals more often throughout 2023 – cutting costs either by buying more private-label products, clipping coupons, or following in-store promotions. Other cost-saving strategies included shopping at value-focused retailers, frequenting multiple stores in search of deals, or changing stores altogether, a report by 210 Analytics found. “This has led to substantial channel shifting when comparing the share of refrigerated seafood dollars in 2023 versus the channel share distribution in 2019,” 210 Analytics President Anne-Marie Roerink said.
  • The American Shrimp Processors Association (ASPA) has filed antidumping and countervailing duty petitions on imports of frozen warmwater shrimp from countries it claims are causing US processors’ production and shipments to fall and prices to plummet. The group, whose members produce frozen warmwater shrimp in the US, is calling on the federal government to impose additional tariffs on imports from Ecuador, India, Indonesia, and Vietnam, which account for over 90% of total US imports, to counteract their low prices and offset subsidies foreign producers receive. The rising volumes of low-priced imports caused domestic processors’ production and shipments to fall from 2020 to 2022 and in the first half of 2023 as inventories ballooned. ASPA claims that processors’ operating income has all but disappeared and that their net income was negative. The petitions are supported by processors and harvesters in six shrimp-producing states including Florida and Texas.
  • Frozen food contributes to lower food waste rates, with 83% of shoppers surveyed saying buying frozen food is a good way to limit the amount of food waste in their household, the Specialty Food Association reported in July. The survey of 1,500 US consumers conducted by market research firm 210 Analytics for the American Frozen Food Institute finds that frozen ingredients provide additional meal flexibility, with nine in 10 frozen food consumers agreeing that frozen food allows having a backup plan without the risk of spoilage. Moreover, research from the Cornell University Dyson School of Business supports that frozen foods are wasted less than their fresh counterparts at both the retail and consumer levels. While different types of food have different waste rates, frozen products are typically much less likely to be discarded than their fresh counterparts, according to Cornell research.
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