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Overall U.S. retail seafood inflation dropped in the first quarter of 2023, which benefitted all sectors of the industry but frozen sales, according to new data shared at Elanco’s “Seafood in U.S. Retail” webinar on 2 May.

Total food and beverage inflation spiked 11.3 percent in the first quarter of this year compared versus the first quarter of 2022, but frozen seafood prices rose only 3.9 percent, fresh seafood prices were up 2.2 percent, and shelf-stable prices rose 3.7 percent, 210 Analytics Principal Anne-Marie Roerink said during the webinar, citing data from research firm Circana.

Those increases were much lower than the price hikes seen throughout 2022, according to Roerink. Still, the price hikes contributed to a 3.2 percent drop in frozen seafood sales to USD 1.86 billion (EUR 1.7 billion).

However, shelf-stable seafood sales jumped 3.8 percent in the quarter to USD 711 million (EUR 645 million), while fresh sales rose 0.2 percent to USD 1.66 million (EUR 1.5 million).

“By and large, frozen foods have seen above-average inflation, so this is not an issue isolated to seafood,” Roerink said. Seafood inflation as a whole, though, has come down tremendously over the past few months, she noted.