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Retail Report: Pollock picture

Lent boosts demand, but pollock sales decline overall

December 01, 2009

While the majority of the pollock market goes to the foodservice category via the Filet-O-Fish and other fried fish sandwiches, there are pollock products still sold at the fresh fish counter. A fish with an important global presence, pollock remains the fourth most popular fish on a per-capita consumption basis in the United States.

This species is classified within the other fresh fish subcategory, the fourth largest subcategory within finfish. Other fresh fish accounted for 8.8 percent of finfish dollar sales 
during the 52 weeks ending Aug. 29, following salmon, tilapia and catfish with 35.7 percent, 16.5 percent and 11.2 percent, respectively. Pollock comprised 6.7 percent of other fresh fish dollars and contributed 0.21 percent to total seafood department dollar sales. Nationally, weekly pollock sales averaged $12.40 per store, a 0.6 percent decline from the previous year.

Pollock saw its highest sales nationally the week of Jan. 17, with $22 per store and 14.8 percent growth from the previous year. Another significant peak week was before Lent, Feb. 28, when pollock averaged $19 per store. Pollock had the lowest weekly sales during the last week in November, with $7, decreasing 32.7 percent from the prior year.

Average pollock weekly dollar sales grew in two regions compared to the previous year, yet overall U.S. retail sales declined. The East region had the highest average weekly sales with $38 per store, well above the national average, and the largest growth (up 4.4 percent) from the prior year. The Central region also surpassed the national average with $20 in weekly sales per store, up 1.2 percent from the prior year. Both the East and Central regions had the largest pollock dollar 
 contribution to the department of 0.38 percent each. The South region had the smallest weekly sales of $2 per store, which was a 4.4 percent decline over the previous year, and the smallest percentage of dollar contribution at 0.04 percent. The West region had the largest decline in average dollar sales from the prior year, down 16.5 percent to $7, with a 0.15 percent dollar contribution to department.


This sales review is provided by the Perishables Group, Inc. (PG), Chicago, Ill., an independent consulting firm focused on innovation and creating value for clients in the fresh food industry. Reported results are for Sept. 6, 2008 through Aug. 29, 2009, compiled from grocery stores nationwide, representing 62 percent of national supermarket ACV share. Sales data provided by Perishables Group FreshFacts® powered by Nielsen. For more information, contact Kelli Beckel; phone: (773) 929-7013; e-mail: kellib@perishablesgroup.com.




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