ARGENTINA: Shrimp (Pleoticus muelleri) catches reached a new record last year, according to landings figures published by the Nation's Undersecretariat of Fisheries.
Preliminary data indicate that until December 31, 2018, 244,066 tonnes of the crustacean were landed. This volume represents 843 tonnes more than 2017, when the landings totaled 243,223 tonnes, the highest level that had been registered so far for this fishery.
Shrimp catches have been registering an increasing trend since 2009, which accelerated from 2013, when the fleet exceeded the barrier of 100,000 tonnes per year. In the last five years, shrimp landings in Argentine ports grew by 89 percent, taking into account that in 2014, 129,103 tonnes were landed.
Last year`s high performance was achieved despite the fact that the Rawson coastal fleet had a weak start to the season, and also faced a month of unemployment as a result of a union conflict with the SOMU. For its part, the fleet had to face a SICONARA strike.
In addition, the climatic conditions were not the best to operate in national waters, but all these factors did not prevent landings from continuing to grow.
The freezing outriggers trawlers contributed 119,522 tonnes; the coastal fleet, 64,761 tonnes; the high-seas wet-fish vessels, 52,016 tonnes; and those of bays/estuaries, 7,766 tonnes.
Puerto Madryn (Chubut) was the port that received the highest volume of catches: 77,285 tonnes, followed by the ports of Rawson (Chubut) and Puerto Deseado (Santa Cruz), with 58,385 tonnes and 40,700 tonnes, respectively.