Case study: Fresh cod in the United Kingdom
Most European markets for Atlantic cod are built on a strong dependency on imports as the main suppliers are extra-EU countries (Norway, Russia and Iceland). Statistically, Denmark appears as the largest European trader for fresh Atlantic cod. But Denmark is a ‘hub’ for Norwegian fish. Generally speaking UK is dependent on international sources for seafood supply. Cod is with haddock the key whitefish species for the UK market. Iceland represents a key source of supply for both cod and haddock into the UK. In 2015, UK imported 108,000 t of cod and exported 12,460 t.
Regarding the price structure in the supply chain for the fresh cod fillet: the filleting is a key step of the process as filleting losses are estimated to account for 45% from the whole fresh cod (gutted, head-on). The ex-factory price is estimated at 47% of the retail price without VAT. The main costs are: processing, packaging, ice, labelling, transport and processor’s margin. 50% of the retail price (including VAT) is the retailer costs and margin.