Retailers To Stop Carrying Lobster

A Lastest News about Marine Aquaculture in Germany

Posted on: 12 Mar 2012

Several German discount retailers will reportedly stop carrying lobsters due to animal rights concerns.

THIS REPORT CONTAINS ASSESSMENTS OF COMMODITY AND TRADE ISSUES MADE BY USDA STAFF AND NOT NECESSARILY STATEMENTS OF OFFICIAL U.S. GOVERNMENT POLICY Voluntary Public - Date: 2/29/2012 GAIN Report Number: GM12008 Germany Post: Berlin German Retailers To Stop Carrying Lobster Over Animal Rights Report Categories: Fishery Products Agriculture in the News Approved By: Paul Spencer Prepared By: Paul Spencer Report Highlights: Several German discount retailers will reportedly stop carrying lobsters due to animal rights concerns. Animal Rights and Lobsters Several German retail food chains have reportedly agreed to stop selling lobsters this year. The stores are: Lidl, Norma, Netto Stavenhagen und Penny. While these are mostly discount retailers, they do carry lobster and offer popular holiday season sales that are an important component to the market. German retailers are being pressured by the Albert Schweitzer Foundation and other non-governmental organizations to stop carrying lobster - both frozen and fresh ? due to animal rights concerns. According to the Foundation?s web page, the trade in lobsters should end because, ?month long confinement without food and the cooking of living animals causes much stress and pain and suffering.? This action follows a related campaign against the live trade in lobsters the southern German state of Bavaria. That campaign raised concerns, among other things, about the configuration of live lobster displays in retail stores. U.S. Trade Interest Official U.S. trade statics show U.S. lobster exports to Germany at around $3 million in 2011. However, these numbers to not take into account inter-EU sales and actual sales to Germany are probably much larger. Sales of U.S. lobster to the EU-27 were $187 million in 2011. Area/Partners of Destination January - December And Commodities Exported Values in Thousands of dollars Lobster 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 Partner Product Value Value Value Value Value Value European $ $ $ $ $ $ 1 Union-27 Lobster 167,545 199,344 196,332 176,558 179,860 187,872 $ $ $ $ $ $ 2 Germany(*) Lobster 4,842 4,014 3,170 2,645 3,766 3,095 Notes: 1. Data Sourc e: Department of Com merce, U.S. Census Bureau , Foreign Trade Statistics 2. FAS Totals include all Agricultural commodities and FAS selected NONAG commodity items. 3. (*) denotes a country that is a summarization of its component countries. Background on German Food Retailers The German retail food sector is dominated by five large retailers which have more than 90 percent of the market. Germany has the highest share of discounter in food retailing (37.9 %) in the world. Aldi is the leading German discounter, followed by Lidl and Netto. The high concentration coupled with price competition make the German food retail sector especially sensitive to the threat of negative publicity. German retailers are quite responsive to NGO concerns over animal rights, sustainability, and biotech foods, at times regardless of the facts. Overall Market Share - German Food Retail Sector Store Type 2010 Market Share (%) Superstores (>= 2.500 m2) 26.0 Supermarkets large (1.000-2.499 m2) 14.4 Supermarkets (100-999 m2) 13.4 Discounters 37.9 Other (mainly Drugstores) 8.3 Superstores (>= 2.500 m2) 26.0 Source: Nielsen
Posted: 12 March 2012