New research has found the prices of seafood are soaring in many parts of Australia, with the main focus on New South Wales.
The report, published on Monday by the Australian Institute of Marine Science, found the total market price for crabs and shrimp in New South Welsh and South Australian was up to $100 per kilogram.
The prices were also up $10 on the previous year.
“The average wholesale price for seafood in NSW was $85.10 per kilo last year, up $7.90, or 7.7 per cent, on the same year last year,” the report found.
“A majority of the increase in the average price for shrimp and crab was driven by rising demand in the South West and the North West.”
While the price increase was “unexpected”, Dr Nick McGlashan, who led the research team, said the results “suggest that the recent surge in demand for seafood has been driven by demand in New Zealand and the West Coast of Australia”.
He said “the increased demand from the West and East Coast has been a factor” and suggested the price hike was “a good indicator of continued strong demand”.
He also suggested the rise in prices was “likely to continue”.
Dr McGlastan said the findings indicated “a strong increase in demand” for seafood across Australia and “it is expected that seafood prices will continue to rise.”
The report found the majority of seafood consumers in New York and New Jersey, as well as New Zealand, were now looking to buy locally.
“New Zealanders and New South Yorks are looking for seafood that is cheaper than the Australian market, and the prices for New Zealanders are up over 40 per cent since 2014,” Dr McLean said.
The researchers also found “rising demand from Australia and New England is likely to continue, and this will be reflected in increased prices”. “
However, it appears that the rise is also being driven by increased demand for fresh fish from the East Coast and New Zealand.”
The researchers also found “rising demand from Australia and New England is likely to continue, and this will be reflected in increased prices”.
Dr David Williams, from the Queensland Agricultural Research Institute, said Australia was seeing an “increasingly significant increase” in demand.
“As the price of fish continues to rise, we can expect that demand for Australian fish will increase as well,” he said.
However, he cautioned that the increase was unlikely to last.
“While the prices are increasing, we don’t think they are going to last forever,” he told ABC Radio.
Dr Williams said Australia had also seen a “significant increase in Chinese demand”.
“Chinese demand for our fish has grown substantially over the last five years, particularly in New England and Queensland,” he explained.
“It has been fairly consistent over time and it has not been affected by the economic climate of the last couple of years.”
Dr Williams added that Australian seafood was also a “particularly important commodity in China” where “the supply chain is largely based in China”.