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Kibun exec: Hokkaido surimi production to slump further in 2017

But overall supply into the Japanese market is set to recover year-on-year.

Japanese surimi producers are facing yet another difficult year in 2017, with output levels set to drop further, Toshimi Itou of Kibun Foods said at at the 17th Surimi Industry Forum in Astoria, Oregon, last week.

At the same time, this means opportunities for overseas suppliers such as the United States, Thailand and India will rise further, he said.

Production of Hokkaido frozen surimi already fell a staggering 54.3 percent between 2012 and 2016, from 85,887 to 39,200 metric tons.

In 2017, production is expected to decline further to 38,900 metric tons, Itou said.

This is mainly due to the drop in pollock landings in Japan, which fell 52.6 percent between 2011 and last year. 

As a result, the production of pollock surimi more than halved between 2012 and last year from 64,655 to 30,000 metric tons, which is expected to remain stable this year.

Production of Atka mackerel surimi slumped 98.3 percent from 11,787 metric tons in 2012 to 200 metric tons last year.