Caterers must adapt to fish price rises

24 July 2008 by
Caterers must adapt to fish price rises

Fish price inflation created by the rising cost of diesel will force caterers and restaurateurs to change their menus one supplier has warned.

As the average price of diesel topped £6 a gallon in June fishermen have been forced to reduce the number of trips they make out to sea and UK fish hauls are reducing.

Toby Baxendale, chief executive officer of Direct Seafoods, told Caterersearch: "There is less fish coming out of the sea as some boats cannot afford to fill up and generate the right value of haul to sell at auction.

"There has been general price rises on fish and there will come a point where the price rises so high that it becomes attractive for the fishermen to go out and fish again. But at the moment it is bad news for all of us."

Baxendale urged caterers and restaurateurs to not be concerned about a shortfall in the volume of fish in the UK market but warned them to expect higher prices for their usual purchases.

"Caterers might have to balance out their menus differently. They need to look at different types of fish and be more innovative. They should look at fish outside of the British palate, like Pollack, Whiting or Coley."

Baxendale added that he would try to pass on as little of the price rises as possible to customers.

Food inflation >>

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By Christopher Walton

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