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David @ Tokyo

Perspective from Japan on whaling and whale meat, a spot of gourmet news, and monthly updates of whale meat stockpile statistics



Whale meat stockpile update - July 2007

Well I'm back with the whale meat stockpile update for July 2007. The Ministry of Agriculture Forests and Fisheries released them on September 11. The original documents are here in PDF and MS Excel format.

The last two months have been significant in that on the outgoing stock front, the sale of by-product from the JARPA programme took place.

July 2007 outgoing stock: 1,235 tonnes

This July outgoing stock figure is the second largest outflow in a single month for all the figures I have available (stretching back to February 2004). Only the July 2006 figure (1,723 tonnes) was larger, although not directly comparable as in 2006 the JARPA by-product auctions did not start until July 3, where as this year it started on June 25 (continuing for a month).

At any rate, given the marked reduction in supply available in 2007 as compared to 2006, this figure was surprisingly high for me.

July 2007 incoming stock: 707 tonnes

On the incoming stock side of things, this figure is slightly lower than the 2006 July figure of 905 tonnes.

July 2007 overall stockpile movement: Down 528 to 3,327 tonnes

The stockpile size is now down to 71% of the size of the stockpile at the same time last year.

Graph: Annual volumes

In previous updates indications were that YTD outgoing stock would overtake YTD incoming stock in June, and evidently as we see with both the June and July figures included in the above graph, this has now occurred.

Also significantly, the 2007 YTD outgoing stock volume as of the end of July remains ahead of the figure from the same point in time in 2006 - despite a large decrease in available stock.

Graph: Monthly stockpile movements

It appears that the stockpile is heading towards it's lowest levels since 2004. In recent years the stockpile has bottomed out around February, prior to the return of the JARPA fleet.

Graph: 12-month moving averages

The 12-month moving averages indicate that outgoing stock is at it's current limit, and with consumption in 2007 looking likely to outstrip available supply it remains most likely that the pink outgoing stock value will trend to a lower level nearer the incoming stock average.

The high outgoing stock volume figure for July means that the average has not dropped as sharply as I had been expecting.

Graph: Regional whale meat stockpiles

As expected, the Tokyo figure has dropped away sharply over the past couple of months, as the JARPA by-product auction has taken place.

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August figures will be released on October 11.



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