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German frozen fish, seafood sales stagnate in 2016

Consumers bought significantly less frozen products at retailers -- but sales are growing at a foodservice level.

Overall sales of frozen fish and seafood in Germany dropped 1 percent last year, according to the latest figures released by the German frozen food institute Deutsches Tiefkühlinstitut (DTI).

Sales volumes, not including ready-meals containing fish or seafood, declined from 303,790 metric tons in 2015 to 300,627 metric tons last year.

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Sales at retail took the biggest hit, and dropped 2.8 percent from 212,625 to 206,747 metric tons year-on-year.

According to DTI, this was mainly due to higher raw material prices and, consequently, higher prices of fish and seafood for shoppers.

Sales of fish fillets declined due to the increased competition from the chilled seafood aisle, especially at discounters, the institute said.

This drop at a retail level was, however, somewhat compensated for by the foodservice industry as more professional chefs opted for frozen fish and seafood.

In 2016, sales in that segment rose 3 percent compared to the previous year, from 91,165 to 93,880 metric tons.

Breaded fish and ready meals saw particularly good development in the foodservice segment, growing 4.5 percent and 5.5 percent, respectively.

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