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Peru's Diamante, Exalmar don't fear fishmeal price fallout

Pesquera Diamante and Exalmar executives not expecting signficant price falls despite 33% increase in second season anchovy quota.

Peruvian fisheries companies are welcoming the 33 percent increase in anchovy quota for north central waters despite potential for this to weigh heavy on prices.

Peruvian anchovy quota lifted by 33% for second season

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With the biomass close to 9 million metric tons, the quota for the second season is set at 2.78 million metric tons.

"It is good news for the sector, the fact that IMARPE has confirmed that anchovy biomass health is good and that for this reason we can capture a better share," Pesquera Diamante CEO Pablo Trapunsky told IntraFish.

""As always, quota is one thing, catching it is another.""

The higher quota is welcomed from a biomass point of view because it shows the stock is healthy, Exalmar CFO Raul Briceno said.

The comments echo those of Enrico Bachis, market research director at the Marine Feed Ingredients Organisation (IFFO).

At the same time Trapunsky injects a note of caution.

"As always, quota is one thing, catching it is another," he said. "We have to see if we can catch and complete the quota."

Rabobank: Anchovy quota hike, swine fever will keep fishmeal prices low into 2020

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Price impact

The anchovy quota hike and the spread of African swine fever in China will keep fishmeal prices low into 2020, amid record inventories, according to Rabobank analysts.

When the first season got underway in April, fishmeal sold at between $1,500 (€1,350) and and $1,520 (€1,375) per metric ton, Briceno said.

"But prices were dragged down to $1,350 (€1,220) to $1,380 (€1,250) a ton, which is a low price for a quota of 2.2 million tons from the previous season," he said.

Whether prices fall again will depend on the pace of catches, Briceno said, adding that at the moment fish in northern waters are highly concentrated.

Whatever the outcome, Trapunsky said he's sure the quality of the Peruvian fishmeal gives it a guaranteed market.

"And if China does not consume everything, other markets will," he said.

With the price having already dropped over two months ago, he doesn't think it will go down further, in his view.

"It is likely to remain that way until the balance between demand and supply is achieved again, as has always happened," he said.

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