Friday, September 16, 2011

Tilapia Shows Largest Consumption Gain in NFI Top 10 Seafood List

Americans ate 20% more tilapia in 2010 than they did in 2009, propelling it from the No. 5 spot to the No. 4 spot with the single largest gain in consumption on the National Fisheries Institute’s (NFI) latest Top Ten Seafood List.

Other impressive gains saw pangasius jump 14% to claim the No. 8 slot, up one from last year. And while cod remained at No. 7, it gained 11% over 2009.

The Top 10 White Fish Consumed in 2010 (pounds per capita)

1. Shrimp, 4.0
2. Canned Tuna, 2.7
3. Salmon, 1.999
4. Tilapia, 1.450
5. Alaska Pollock, 1.192
6. Catfish, 0.800
7. Crab, 0.573
8. Cod, 0.463
9. Pangasius, 0.405
10. Clams, 0.341

“If you look at the numbers from 2008, 2009 and now 2010, keeping in mind population growth, we’re hopeful that we’re beginning to see seafood consumption steadying, a trend that makes it poised for gains,” says NFI president John Connelly.

This year’s list contains some anomalies, including a National Marine Fisheries Services (NMFS) recalculation of 2009’s total pounds per capita that changed to 16 lbs from 15.8 lbs. There was also a slight reduction in clam consumption on the 2009 list.

The 2010 Alaska Pollock numbers appear to show a drop of 18% when compared to the 2009 list, but about half of that decline is actually due to a new export category that identified previously uncounted exports. The balance was due to a reduction in imports and a sharp increase in surimi exports. Also, pollock-fillet exports increased, reflecting the continued strong demand for pollock fillets in Europe, as it remains the most popular seafood item in Germany.

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