There are no exports from Europe registered, but quantities of glass eels continue to arrive in Asia. The parallel market in North Africa has in the last month has gone from strength at some cost to the legal business. Some traders have relocated their families to North Africa to participate in this new gold rush. It would appear that fishing boats, transiting from Spain and perhaps France, to North Africa are a suitable conduit for this illegal trade. Prices in Asia for A. anguilla are stated to be in the order of 1300 to 1500 euros per kilo.
Reports from the Far East indicate a threefold increase in glass eel recruitment for Anguilla Japonica. It would appear that this increase in glass eel recruitment is not just limited to Anguilla Japonica.
As expected the increase in production A. japonica is accompanied by a fall in price.
Prices for A. japonica are now in the order of 2 million yen per kilo or 14,000 Euros per kilo or 20 CNY (RMB) per piece. This is a significant fall when compared with last year’s price of 40 CNY (RMB) per piece.
There is an expectation that the catches of A. japonica will increase. For the moment this is a having a major impact on the price of all species. Minor species such as Bicola and Mormorata are now virtually worthless. A.rostra has dropped from 5000/6000 USD to 2500/2800 USD per kilo.
The possibility of increased catches has also had a noteworthy impact on the parallel market for A.anguilla. At this very moment the market in Asia is averse to buying A. anguilla at any price. The next ten days will be critical for buyers in Asia as the market waits to see if production increases. In my view the market will only recover if there is a serious shortfall in production. Without this shortfall the global glass eel market price of all species will not recover this season. Traders holding stock will be faced with some serious losses. Already the stock is more than four weeks old.
Peter Wood and UK Glass Eels.