Earlier today, the Fishery Monitoring Branch of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Fisheries’ Southeast Fisheries Science Center released shrimp landings data from the Gulf of Mexico for the month of March.
Last month, 2.0 million pounds of shrimp were landed by commercial fishermen in the Gulf of Mexico. This was the third consecutive year in which the volume of landings reported for the month of March were lower than the previous March and was 16.8 percent below the prior nineteen-year historical average for March of 2.4 million pounds.
The vast majority of shrimp landings last month took place in Texas, where 1.4 million pounds of shrimp were harvested. This was the second highest volume of shrimp reported as landed in Texas during the month of March in the last twenty years. In contrast, the volume of shrimp landed in Louisiana (0.2 million pounds) and Alabama (0.3 million pounds) were significantly lower than shrimp landings in those states in March 2019.
The increase in reported shrimp landings in Texas for the second straight month comes at the same time as a change in the reporting methodology for NOAA’s monthly report. As previously noted, landings for Texas were reported by the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department.
For the first quarter of this year, 7.7 million pounds of shrimp have been landed in the Gulf of Mexico, up from 6.8 million pounds in 2019 and 7.6 million pounds in 2018 over the same timeframe. However, even with this increase, the total volume of shrimp harvested in the Gulf remains significantly (15.0 percent) below the prior nineteen-year historical average of 9.1 million pounds.
Ex-vessel prices for shrimp landed in the Western Gulf were reported by the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department, while no ex-vessel prices were reported for the northern (Alabama, Louisiana, and Mississippi) or eastern (Florida west coast ports) Gulf. For the Western Gulf, the prices reported for every count size except U15 were significantly higher than the prices reported in March 2019.
As in past months, NOAA’s monthly reporting of shrimp landings in the Gulf of Mexico continues to include the following disclaimer:
“BE ADVISED THAT THE SUMMARIES IN THIS REPORT ARE COLLECTED OR ESTIMATED BY THE FEDERAL PORT AGENTS AND MAY NOT REFLECT THE LANDINGS FROM THE STATES”
Please click the following link to view SSA’s compilation and summary of March 2001-2020 Shrimp Landings and Ex-Vessel Prices for March 2001-2020: https://www.shrimpalliance.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/March-2020-Landings.pdf