March 22, 2018


Value of Ireland's thriving seafood sector breaches EUR 1B



Ireland's seafood sector posted its third consecutive year of growth in 2017, its value up 6.4% compared with the previous year and breaching the €1 billion mark for the first time.


The growth was driven by a 12% increase in net exports (€331 million), a 4% increase in domestic consumption (€429 million) and significant ongoing investment, both private and public (€386 million), according to Bord Iascaigh Mhara (BIM), Ireland's Seafood Development Agency in a report.


The value of trade surpassed €1 billion for the first time (registering €1.15 billion), BIM said. 


Saying Ireland's seafood industry is thriving, BIM CEO Jim O'Toole bared that over the last two years, the contribution of the seafood sector to Ireland's GDP has grown by over 14%.


"The fact trade sales have exceeded €1 billion for the first time demonstrates the clear demand for Irish seafood", he said.


The EU remains Ireland's main export market valued at €392 million (up 9%). France is Ireland's No. 1 export market for seafood accounting for over one quarter of total exports.


The BIM report also said that Irish seafood is building significant growth markets across Africa, Asia and the Middle East, all demonstrating double-digit growths.


On the domestic market, Irish consumers' purchase of seafood grew 4% valued at €429 million. Domestic consumption covers sales in supermarkets and shops as well as in restaurants, cafes and canteens. Salmon, cod and prawns continued to be favoured by Irish consumers, with salmon valued at €96 million and cod at €48 million.

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