Landings of high value species including hake, monkfish and megrim resulted in an increase (+15%) in the overall value of landings to Irish ports in 2019 according to the latest BIM Business of Seafood report. Strong demand for Irish mackerel at the beginning of 2019 following a quota decrease also contributed to this increase.
Exports of farmed Irish organic salmon also experienced significant increases (+26%) last year and were valued at €104 million.
Overall, Ireland’s seafood economy experienced a slight drop (-2%) in 2019 compared to 2018, giving it a total value of €1.22 billion. This was largely driven by a 4% reduction (-€10 million) in private investment and a 2% decline (-€11 million) in exports as global market confidence weakened due to Brexit, trade disputes and the impacts of climate change.
The fundamentals of the sector remained strong in 2019, however, with a 4% increase in government support (€177 million) and a 2% rise in domestic consumption to €496 million. This largely offset the slight fall in private investment to €258 million (-4%) and a decline in our seafood balance of trade (exports – imports) which fell by €31 million (-10%) to €285 million. Overall investment in the sector was €435 million, equivalent to 36% of seafood GDP, nearly the same as in 2018, showing confidence in the sector remains stable.
BIM’s 2019 Business of Seafood report is available for download here (pdf 3,942Kb)