1.1 Nutritional benefits of fish and shellfish
1.2 Characteristics of consumption in the region
1.3 Annual comsumptionof fish and shellfish
1.4 Gross market data
1.5 Specific market data
1.6 Information for the trade
First and foremost, increasing the per caput consumption of fish and shellfish in any country benefits health. Aquatic animals contain a high level of protein (17-20%), with an amino-acid profile similar Co that of the meat of land animals. The flesh of fish can therefore be readily digested and immediately utilized by the human body. Compared with land animals (with some exceptions, such as shellfish), aquatic animals have a far higher percentage of edible flesh, and there is little wastage. Aquatic animals are a source of minerals, such as calcium, iron, and phosphorus, as well as trace elements and vitamins. Marine species are particularly rich in iodine. The fatty-acid content is high in polyunsaturates, and particularly those which are attributed to reduce blood cholesterol.
Canada and the USA have very high standards of living and their inhabitants generally enjoy a high protein diet. The consumption of meat is very much higher than fish in both countries. According to the FAO Food Balance Sheets (see Tables 1 and 2), the 1984-86 average annual combined meat plus fish per caput consumption was:
116 kg/caput in Canada
133 kg/caput in the USA
In Canada present annual per caput consumption of meat, eggs and poultry is: pork 28 kg, beef 40 kg, eggs 12 kg and poultry 24 kg. Per caput consumption of the same commodities in the USA is: pork 29 kg, beef 49 kg, eggs 15 kg and poultry 32 kg. During the period 1960-85, consumption patterns of eggs, meat, fish and poultry products in the USA showed eggs declined by 22%, pork increased slightly less than 3%, beef increased by 16%, fish increased by nearly 20%, and poultry increased over 100%.
These changes reflect the general public's awareness of the health attributes of the various products. In the case of poultry, its ready availability and competitive price were also important factors in its increased consumption. Shifts have also been noted in the demand for various products as Government research institutions in both countries have called for increased consumption of cereals, chicken, fish and fruits, and a relative decrease in amounts of red meat and dairy products with high fat contents. In general, demand for fish and fishery products in Canada and the USA is expected to grow as consumers' disposable income increases and consumers realize the nutritional benefits of seafood.
No data are available for annual meat consumption in Greenland. However, during the winter months smoked mutton is frequently consumed. Consumption of fish and fishery products in Greenland has changed little over the years. Fresh fish is consumed during the main fishing seasons, whereas salted and dried fish make up the bulk of the consumption during the rest of the year.
The 1984-86 average annual consumption of fish and fishery products in the region was: Canada 23.2 kg per caput, Greenland 85.5 kg per caput (1987 figure), and the USA 21.7 kg per caput. The 23.2 kg per caput of fish and shellfish consumed in Canada was made up of 2.8 kg of freshwater fish, 13.5 kg of marine fish (7.0 kg of demersal, 5.5 kg of pelagic and 1.0 kg of other marine fish), 4.3 kg of crustaceans and 2.6 kg of molluscs. The 21.7 kg per caput of fish and shellfish consumed in the USA was composed of 1.1 kg of freshwater fish, 12.2 kg of marine fish (8.6 kg of demersal, 3.5 kg of pelagic and 0.2 kg of other marine fish), 2.7 kg of crustaceans and 5.8 kg of molluscs.
In 1986 only 0.7% of all edible fish and shellfish in Canada came from aquaculture, whereas in the USA the figure was 27% (up from 12% in 1984). Most Canadian farmed rainbow trout, blue mussels and oysters are consumed domestically. Consumption of farmed catfish, trout, salmon and shrimp has increased annually in the USA and the demand remains strong.
Data from the World Bank Atlas (1988) showed the 1986 GNP in US$ per caput (with % real growth for 1985-86) was Canada, US$ 14 100 (+ 1.8%); Greenland, US$ 8 790 (+ 8.4%); and the USA, US$ 17 500 (+ 1.9%).
The population of Canada increased from 25 379 000 to 25 655 000 between 1985 and 1986, representing a + 1.2% growth rate between 1973-86.
From 1985 to 1986 the population of Greenland remained stable at about 53 000, but showed a + 0.7% growth rate between 1973-86.
The population of the USA increased from 239 283 000 to 241 252 000 between 1985 and 1986, representing a + 1.0% growth rate between 1973-86.
Canadian fish landings in 1986 totalled 1.53 million metric tonnes (t) , valued at Can.$ 1.35 thousand million. Of the total, 1.40 million t were sold for human consumption. Approximately 19% of the catch was marketed as fresh fish and as frozen products. Included in the landings were about 11 396 t of Canadian farmed production, valued at about Can.$ 32 million (in value 50% trout, 21% oysters, 20% salmon and about 9% blue mussels).
Commercial landings in Greenland in 1986 totalled 100 000 t. The catch was marketed as fish (fresh, chilled or frozen), 19%; fish (dried, salted or smoked), 3%; Crustacea (fresh, chilled or frozen), 62%; fish products and preparations, 0.8%; crustacean products and preparations, 15%; and fish meals, 0.2%. A large part of domestic demand is supplied by part-time and hobby fishermen. Greenland has no reported aquaculture production.
Commercial fish landings (edible) in the USA were 1.5 million t in 1986, a decrease compared with 1985 landings. Approximately 63% of the 1986 catch was marketed as fresh and frozen (39% finfish and 24% shellfish), and 37% was marketed as canned fish products. Included in the edible landings were about 417 084 t of aquaculture production, valued at US$ 520 million (in value 44% catfish, 11% trout, 9% freshwater crawfish, 9% golden shiner and 6% American oyster). Landings of industrial (non-edible) fish were 1.2 million t in 1986.
Canada is a net exporter of fish, shellfish and fishery products. Fish is its second largest food export after grains. In 1986, the volume of Canadian fish and fishery products exports increased by 6% to 590 855 t, representing 73% of total fish production. The value of fish exports increased 30% in 1986 to a total of Can.$ 2.4 thousand million. Canada is the world's leading exporter of fish and fishery products.
The main fishery products exported from Canada continue to be salmon (including 75% of farmed production) and herring products from the Pacific fishery; and cod, flatfish, crab, lobster and scallop products from the Atlantic fishery. The USA continues to be the most important export market for Canadian fish and fishery products, receiving 59% volume of its fish exports in 1986. The European Economic Community (EEC) received 13% of Canadian fish exports, other European countries 6%, Central and South America 6%, and Japan 13%.
The fishing industry plays a central role in Greenland. About a quarter of the actively employed population is within the sector and fish and fish products account for two-thirds of the total value of all exports. Traditionally Greenland is a net exporter of fish and fishery products. Over 97% of the total 1986 fish production, including imports for the year, was exported. Exports of fish and fishery products from Greenland in 1986 totalled 95 800 t, valued at US$ 211 million. The main export for the past few years has been prawns and prawn products and preparations, which accounted for 79% of total fish exports in 1986. Denmark is the major market for Greenland's fish exports; in 1985 it received 99% of the exports.
Total USA exports of edible fishery products of domestic origin in 1986 were a record 334 000 t, valued at a record US$ 1.3 thousand million. The main export was salmon (fresh/frozen and canned). A partial reason for increased USA exports of fishery products was the decline in the value of the US dollar relative to most other currencies. For example, the value of the US dollar dropped 30% against the Japanese yen between 1985 and 1986, increasing the competitiveness of US fishery products in the Japanese market.
Canada's fish imports in 1986 increased to 152 371 t, valued at Can.$ 616 million. Increases occurred primarily in fresh and frozen fish, canned tuna and fresh or frozen shrimp or prawns. The largest supplier of fish product imports to Canada in 1986 was the USA (60% of volume and 51% of value), followed by the EEC (33% volume), Japan, Central and South America, and other European countries.
Fish imports to Greenland are minor and in 1986 totalled only 426 t, valued at US$ 1.1 million. Overall, imports represented less than 1% of total domestic fish landings in Greenland.
The USA is a net importer of fish and fishery products. Imports of edible fishery products in 1986 totalled 1.4 million t, valued at a record US$ 4.8 thousand million. The US is the second largest market in the world for fish and fishery products. Shrimp and tuna were the major species imported. The quantity of shrimp imported in 1986 established a record with 182 000 t, which included farmed shrimp from Latin America and S.E. Asia. Valued at US$ 1.4 thousand million, shrimp imports accounted for 30% of the value of total US edible imports.
Information for the commercial aquaculture fish trade is available for Canada, Greenland and the USA in the form of various monthly and quarterly magazines and news-sheets, such as: Seafood Business, Seafood Leader, FAO GLOBEFISH Highlights, Greensheets (NMFS), and the Seafood International Directory 1988 (see Bibliography of Resource Materials).
Also, two annual directories - Canadian Aquaculture Magazine 1988 Buyer's Guide, and Aquaculture Magazine Buyer's Guide for 1988 - (see Bibliography) provide a range of information and addresses dealing with (a) consumer and market publications, (b) fish processors, brokers and buyers, (c) exporters and importers, and (d) wholesalers of seafood and fish products. Market information and contact addresses for aquaculture products in Canada and the USA are also available from the North American Directory of Aquaculture 1988/89 (published by Kevgor Aquasystems, Vancouver, Canada).
Detailed trade information for fish and fish products in Greenland is limited. A list of 18 fish processors and exporters in Greenland is given in The Danish Fisheries (1980), along with a brief description of the fishing industry in Greenland.