Association reacts to Price Panel decision on shrimp

May 12, 2010 09:02

The Association of Seafood Producers representing 12 of the 13 shrimp plants in the province reacted today to the Standing Fish Price Panel's decision on prices for the spring 2010 fishery. The panel issued a decision today saying the price will be 48 cents per lb, a price slightly above last year's price, reports with reference to Association of Seafood Producers.

"Clearly this panel does not get it," says Derek Butler, Executive Director of ASP. "They simply do not get it. They write in their decision that, and I quote, "Losses were prevalent in 2009 throughout the supply chain in our established outlets in Europe." How can they then translate this into a price increase?"

Butler says the panel decision also acknowledges that the industry is still experiencing the effects of the worst economic climate since the Great Depression, which makes the decision to raise prices for shrimp even more illogical.

"How can they look at the market, look at the situation in Europe, with the overall economic instability, and then say "let's put our prices up?" Alice in Wonderland makes more sense," said a frustrated Butler.

While ASP did not make an appearance before the Panel on shrimp, Butler says the panel is wrong when it says it received no presentation from processors.

"We submitted a table on market and currency changes spring 2010 over spring 2009, the same table we submit every year. The panel said it received no perspective from processors but that is simply misleading," said Butler.

ASP also says the Panel has chosen to ignore the market reports which point to the difficult times in the industry, and which confirm that the market cannot support the panel's own price decision. Each year the provincial Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture commissions market reports on various species for the use of the panel and the parties to negotiation.

"It reminds me of the line, "They claim to see fern-seed and can't see the elephant ten yards away in broad daylight,"" said Butler. "It is indefensible to arbitrate prices in this manner in the province. There is too much at stake."

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