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Global crab meat market survives pandemic losses, with online trading promising a recovery. IndexBox has just published a new report: ‘World – Crabs And Crabs Meat – Market Analysis, Forecast, Size, Trends And Insights’. Here is a summary of the report’s key findings.

In 2020, the production and export of crab and crab meat declined worldwide; the fall in sales incurred by the closure of the HoReCa segment, however, was partially offset by the rapid surge in demand from retail consumers. Global imports fell against previous year figures, but demand from the USA, a major exporter, remained robust.

Key Trends and Insights

Global imports of crabs and crab meat fell by 14.7% during the first six-month period of 2020, against the same period for 2019. Online trading in the retail sector, combined with home delivery, helped partly offset the slump in sales seen during the closure of the HoReCa segment.

The U.S. maintains its dominant importer position. In 2020, the American crab imports fell marginally against previous year indices (-1.4%), spurring a sharp increase in supplies from Canada.

In 2020, Russia, a key exporter, supplied 12% less crab than in 2019. The Republic of Korea remains a key international sales market for Russian crab products, absorbing over 60% of Russian crabs.

Should the pandemic wane in 2021, the crab and crab meat market is projected to expand to 3.7M tonnes (IndexBox estimates) to 2030. The main impetus factors for the market growth include rising population growth and higher levels of income, rapid urbanization and increasing demand from retail consumers.

China to Remain the Largest Consumer of Crabs while Russia to Dominate the Export Market

The country with the largest volume of crab and crab meat consumption was China (1.8M tonnes), accounting for 61% of total volume. Moreover, crab and crab meat consumption in China exceeded the figures recorded by the second-largest consumer, Indonesia (255K tonnes), sevenfold. The third position in this ranking was occupied by the U.S. (176K tonnes), with a 6% share (IndexBox estimates).

In China, crab and crab meat consumption increased at an average annual rate of +1.5% over the period from 2012-2019. In the other countries, the average annual rates were as follows: Indonesia (+19.5% per year) and the U.S. (-1.3% per year).

In value terms, China ($15.4B) led the market, alone. The second position in the ranking was occupied by the U.S. ($2.1B). It was followed by Indonesia.

The countries with the highest levels of crab and crab meat per capita consumption in 2019 were South Korea (1,904 kg per 1000 persons), China (1,230 kg per 1000 persons) and Indonesia (943 kg per 1000 persons).

In 2019, Russia (82K tonnes) and Canada (63K tonnes) represented the key exporters of crabs and crab meat around the world, together resulting at approx. 39% of total exports. China (40K tonnes) occupied the next position in the ranking, followed by the UK (20K tonnes) and Indonesia (18K tonnes). All these countries together occupied near 21% share of total exports. The U.S. (17K tonnes), Myanmar (16K tonnes), Bangladesh (13K tonnes), India (11K tonnes), Ireland (9.9K tonnes), Bahrain (9.4K tonnes), Norway (7.7K tonnes) and Pakistan (7.1K tonnes) followed a long way behind the leaders.

From 2012 to 2019, the biggest increases were in Norway, while shipments for the other global leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

In value terms, Russia ($1.5B), Canada ($1.1B) and China ($337M) were the countries with the highest levels of exports in 2019, with a combined 65% share of global exports.

The average crab and crab meat export price stood at $12,003 per tonne in 2019, growing by 2.5% against the previous year. Over the last seven years, it increased at an average annual rate of +4.7%. The pace of growth appeared the most rapid in 2017 when the average export price increased by 12% y-o-y. The global export price peaked in 2019 and is expected to retain growth in years to come.

Source: IndexBox AI Platform