Russian bans put salmon prices in limbo

Alaska’s commercial fishermen have hauled in more than 125 million salmon this year, but the prices for those fish are still in limbo.
 
Fishermen have landed about 72.5 million pinks, 41.7 million sockeye, 2.1 million coho, 8.4 million chums and 413,000 kings, according to the Alaska Department of Fish and Game’s bluesheet estimate Aug. 13.
 
Russia’s recent ban on imports from the United States, Canada, Norway and other countries could affect the price for Alaska salmon, however.
The country is not allowing food imports, including seafood, in response to the economic sanctions other countries instituted after a Malaysian Airlines flight was downed over eastern Ukraine.
 
That means Alaska has lost its second largest salmon roe market, and also will result in additional Norwegian salmon on the global market.
 
ASMI’s International Program Director Alexa Tonkovich said that in 2013, Alaska exported $46 million of salmon roe directly to Russia. That figure doesn’t capture the full value of the market, because some is also exported to Ukraine and re-exported from there to Russia, she noted.
 
“It does have a significant impact for salmon roe markets,” she said.
 
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