How will El Nino affect Gigas Markets?

Dosidicus Gigas, also known as Humboldt or Giant Squid, is the most fished squid in the world. It inhabits the eastern Pacific Ocean from northern California to southern Chile. China, with over 30 years of experience in the fishing industry. This has become a worldwide pelagic squid fishing powerhouse and a leading producer of gigas squid. The total output of pelagic squid fishing in China accounts for 50–70% of the world’s total pelagic squid fishing. China’s annual output of squid has ranked first globally for over 10 consecutive years. There are many concerns about whether the lucrative catching during El Nino will affect Gigas. Especially, when since this natural phenomenon is confirmed in 2023

Gigas Manufactoring Ocean Treasure

El Nino is a recurring climatic pattern that occurs every two to seven years. It involves the periodic warming of sea surface temperatures in the central and eastern equatorial Pacific Oceans. This can have significant effects on marine ecosystems and fisheries, including the catching of species like Dosidicus Gigas.

El Nino historical data from Peru

Historically, the abundance and availability of Dosidicus Squid in Peru have been affected depending on the duration and intensity of El Nino and other climatic phenomena.

Landinf for Gigas affected By El Nino

The graphic shows that during the La Nina phenomenon in 1996 and the El Nino between 1997 and 1998, the catching of Dosidicus Gigas affected by El Nino dropped significantly. However, the moderate and short-duration phenomena of El Nino in 1992 and 2002 were not a great threat to the catching volume of giant squid.

Dosidicus gigas is the second-biggest fishery in Peru, only behind the anchovy. In the first semester of 2023, the total landing of gigas in Peru reached 293.4 metric tonnes. Report shows an increase of 158.2% from the same period last year. From the total, 94.8% of the landing was mainly exported for the processing of frozen products.

El Nino affect Giant squid migration pattern

Cold-water species like Dosidicus gigas will typically move north when warmer waters threaten their habitat. The giant squid is a fast-growing cephalopod with an average lifespan of one year. The giant squid migrates regularly in order to feed and reproduce. The Humboldt squid feeds on other cold-water marine species such as hake sardines, lobsters, hake, and plankton. Like most cephalopods, Humboldt squid reproduce only once in their lifetime. According to the National Marine Fisheries Service, during the El Nino phenomenon, giant squids are very likely to migrate to the north. As a survival mechanism against the threat during the stages of growth, mating, and food shortage.

In the past, Dosidicus gigas was only rarely spotted off of central California. But evidence now indicates that this squid has expanded its range northward following El Nino events that warmed northern waters. Dosidicus gigas has been spotted as far north as Alaska. Similarly, it has also expanded its range to southern Chile during warm water intrusions.

Harvest Of Gigas Effected by El Nino

US squid exports to China

In 2022, the squid market made up 75% of the U.S. squid exports to China, a remarkable surge from 22% in 2019. However, if El Nino hits strong this year, market squid production in California may significantly drop. In 2019, the El Nino affect impacted the gigas squid population in California, resulting in the harvest of only 27 million pounds of products. This number was significantly lower than the 141 million pounds harvested in 2022, with China importing 71 million pounds. Since the beginning of the new season in April, the ongoing harvest in California has been notably reduced when compared to past years.

USA harvest of gigas affected by el nino. Photo

Monitoring El Nino and other climate events

The general public readily observes the evident consequences of El Nino, such as the accompanying effects of intensified rainfall like flooding and rockslides. However, the seafood industry particularly discerns the less apparent impacts. If El Nino happen in the upcoming months, these conditions are expected to continue until 2024. Ocean Treasure believes monitoring and understanding these effects. This is crucial for sustainable fisheries management and the conservation of marine resources.

Ocean Treasure: Your reliable supplier of squid products!

Ocean Treasure has more than 16 years of experience providing frozen squid products to more than 40 countries worldwide. We offer a wide variety of frozen squid presentations such as tubes, rings, strips, tentacles, pineapple cuts, and wings, with specifications according to each market´s preference. As an integral aspect of our service, we will make a comprehensive QC report comprising 10 pages and containing over 100 images within 24 hours following the inspection for each individual order.

Ocean Treasure World Foods Limited commits to fulfilling the requirements of each client by providing firsthand seafood news and market information, offering competitive prices, ensuring quality control, ensuring on-time delivery, and delivering multilingual service.Our team of experts constantly follows the most relevant information in the market and informs clients with daily content available on our webpage and social media accounts.

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