USDA: Catfish Sales Value Up 1% from 2012

    Catfish growers in the United States had sales of 342 million dollars during 2013, up 1 percent from 341 million dollars the previous year. The top four States (Mississippi, Alabama, Arkansas, and Texas) accounted for 94 percent of the United States total sales. The United States total foodsize sales of 321 million dollars increased by 1 percent from the previous year. Sales of stockers totaled 10.3 million dollars in 2013, compared to 10.8 million dollars in 2012. Fingerling and fry sales totaled 10.6 million dollars, down 3 percent from 2012.

    By point of first sale, direct sales to processors accounted for 95.1 percent of total foodsize fish sales, down 1 percent from the previous year. Direct sales to other producers accounted for 85 percent of stocker sales compared with 93 percent in 2012.

    Water Surface Acres Down 9 Percent from January 1, 2013

    The water surface acres being used for catfish production as of January 1, 2014, totaled 75.6 thousand acres, down 9 percent from the 83.3 thousand acres used a year earlier. Of the total acres, 2.94 thousand are to be renovated during the period of January 1 to June 30, 2014. An additional 395 acres are under construction or expected to be constructed and in use by July 1, 2014.

    During the period of July 1 through December 31, 2013, the area taken out of production totaled 6.36 thousand acres. As of January 1, 2014, foodsize fish were produced on 58.9 thousand acres, fingerling-producing acres totaled 11.0 thousand, and 1.81 thousand acres were being used for broodfish production.

    Inventory Numbers

    Catfish producers had 560 thousand broodfish on hand January 1, 2014, up 4 percent from January 1, 2013. Large foodsize fish on hand totaled 4.2 million on January 1, 2014, a 19 percent decrease from a year ago. The number of medium foodsize fish decreased 14 percent to 50.0 million, while small foodsize fish numbers decreased 5 percent to 98.8 million. Large stockers on hand January 1, 2014, at 110 million fish, were down 13 percent from the previous year. Small stocker numbers decreased 16 percent to 178 million. There were 313 million fingerlings on hand January 1, 2014, down 21 percent from January 1, 2013.

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