Content of the study:
The fish and seafood market - Portugal

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1.1 Definition and scope of the study

The fish distribution market covers the consumption and sales of seafood products. The market is dominated by a few large wholesalers, who supply several thousand retailers.

Fish consumption is increasing rapidly worldwide, partly due to increased production, but also due to other factors such as improved distribution channels.

According to European Commission data, Portugal has the third highest per capita consumption of seafood in the world, just behind Norway and South Korea. Current seafood consumption habits are linked to geographical, cultural, historical and political factors. Portuguese seafood consumption is characterized by a great diversity of species and preparation methods, compared to other European countries. Cod (salted and dried), does not exist in Portuguese waters but, due to several historical and cultural factors, it has become the main species in the Portuguese seafood consumption, representing about 38% of the national seafood demand. [Jornal da Economia do Mar]

1.2 A growing world market despite structural obstacles

According to Allied Market Research, the seafood market is expected to grow at a CAGR of approximately *.*% over the period ****-**** to reach $*** billion. 

Globally, the market is benefiting from several factors involving demand growth. Some of the factors driving the growth in demand include:

The steady increase in the world ...

1.3 Focus on the European Union

Source: ****

The table above shows which fish are most consumed at a European level ; we can see that tuna accounts for the largest share (***) of consumption, and that the EU consumes an average of *.** kilos of tuna per year.

On the other hand, the highest rate of sufficiency (***), the EU relies ...

1.4 The Portuguese market is strongly rooted in the fish culture

Portugal was in **** the leading country in seafood consumption per capita by value, with *** euros spent on average per Portuguese according to the European Fisheries and Aquaculture Market Observatory (***).

On the other hand, the Portuguese have the highest ratio between spending on fish and meat. Spending on fish and shellfish is ...

1.5 Foreign Trade

In order to analyse Portugal's external trade in fish and seafood, the following UN Comtrade code was used :

**: fish and crustaceans, molluscs and other aquatic invertebrates.

Portugal is more of an importer than an exporter for these products. In fact, in ****, they imported US$ *.** billion worth of fish and seafood ...


2.1 Per capita consumption of fish and seafood in Portugal

A study by eUMOFA (***). 

Criteria for buying fish and seafood Portugal, ****, in % Source: ****

2.2 Typology of demand according to volumes purchased

Over the period ****-****, there was an average annual decline of *.*% in sales of fresh products, compared to an average annual increase of *.*% in consumption of processed seafood. Fresh seafood sales dropped to ***,*** tons in **** from ***,*** tons in **** and are expected to reach ***,*** tons by ****. Those of processed products, at **,*** tons ...

2.3 Focus on processed seafood

The table below shows the sales of seafood products in Portugal according to industrial processing.  Thus, we see that consumers are giving the lion's share to cod, which in **** represented more than **% of sales of fish and non-fresh seafood. Tuna preparations and cans, meanwhile, approached **% of sales, while those of sardines ...

2.4 Holiday season creates a spike in demand

The cultural factor of demand also implies a certain cyclicality of demand, especially for cod/dried cod. Indeed, the bacalhau is a typical Portuguese Christmas meal and households flock to this product during the holiday season. To illustrate this phenomenon, we used Google Trends results for the search for "bacalhau" over ...


3.1 Industrial fabric and market share

Despite the large number of companies, the market for fish, shellfish and molluscs in Portugal is dominated by a handful of large groups. Indeed, the market suffered a significant decline in the total number of companies following the global crisis of ****, before this figure started to slowly increase in ****. Moreover, ** groups ...

3.2 Distribution of products caught, by product

The table below summarizes the three most caught fish species in Portugal by category, as well as their quantity of tons caught and the percentage of this quantity in the country's total catch in ****:

Source: ****

Portuguese fish and shellfish production patterns can be interpreted by the types of fish caught.

Unsurprisingly, ...

3.3 Geographic and demographic segmentation of fishers

The report of Pordata details the shares of fishers by age and the region in which they registered with the government structure of registered fishers.

Share of each region in the total number of fishers Portugal, ****, in % Source: ****

The northern and Central regions of Portugal account for more than half of ...

3.4 Market value chain

The first step in the supply chain is fishing or aquaculture. Then there is sanitary control of the fish harvest. In the second stage, the fish is processed. The four basic procedures used in the final processing of fish products are heating, freezing, water activity control (***) and finally reach the ...


4.1 Main products fished or imported into Portugal

We can repeat the list of the main types of products fished in Portugal, used previously:

Source: ****

The Government of Canada also details the main seafood products imported into Portugal:

Main imported seafood products Portugal, ****, in % Source: ****

4.2 Estimated prices of the products presented

The prices of seafood products depend on their quality and scarcity as well as on the time of year. The table below gives an idea of what these prices can be in supermarkets.

Source: ****

4.3 Ranges are expanding and new products are appearing

Almost a third of the new products launched on the fish and shellfish market in Portugal concern an extension of an existing range: this can be the branding of a product (***).

But it is new products that account for the largest share of launches: **% of seafood product launches are new products. ...


5.1 Quotas: European management

European fisheries policy

Since ****, the European Fisheries Policy (***) has been responsible for regulating and organizing the entire fisheries sector. Several reforms have been put in place, the most recent of which was applied on January *, ****. According to the European Commission, the CFP has four main areas of action:

fisheries management ; international ...


6.1 Segmentation

  • Cofaco
  • Ramirez & Co Filhos
  • Angulas Aguinaga SA
  • Nomad Foods Ltd
  • Conserveira do Sul Lda
  • AlgarFresco
  • Pescanova 3

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Reviews (5)

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Publicado en 31/01/2022 by Thibaut Reinhard - Biocanna Technologies SRL

We got the numbers we needed. Excellent study

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Publicado en 09/01/2022 by Hugo Schott - Businesscoot

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The market for sports nutrition supplements - France

Publicado en 06/01/2022 by Amaury Wernert

The work of collection, data processing and the method to estimate the market still poorly known are very relevant. Interview with the market specialist on the impact of the Covid crisis very interesting

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Hello Amaury, Thank you for your feedback. We are happy to read that the content and structure of the study have fully met your expectations. :)

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Publicado en 26/11/2020 by Lucie Piette - Cooperl

Good synthesis of the market with interesting figures

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