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NEW YORK HOLDINGS DECREASE 16 PERCENT IN FEBRUARY
Showing a decline of 16 percent during February, March 1 holdings of fishery products in New York cold-storage warehouses totaled 9,252,000 pounds, according to the Service's Fishery Market News office in that city. While most leading items showed larger decreases, the effect of these losses was partially offset by the influx of southern species, such as mullet, sea bass and croaker. Fresh sea bass receipts for February, more than double those of January, caused an oversupply in the market. Approximately 20 percent of these receipts went into cold storage. Croakers, also in oversupply, were frozen and stored.
Butterfish and mackerel decreases resulted from exceedingly small landings of these species. Whiting, although received in greater quantity than in January, showed a large decrease because the demand for this species exceeded the supply. Sablefish and salmon shipments into New York slacked off and cold-storage withdrawals were quite large. Shrimp holdings decreased greatly as receipts of fresh shrimp fell approximately 354,000 pounds below those of January. Continuing large requirements for shrimp caused withdrawals to meet the demands.
COLD-STORAGE HOLDINGS AT BOSTON DECLINE 11 PERCENT IN FEBRUARY
On February 23, there were 7,590,000 pounds of frozen fish held in Boston cold-storage warehouses, according to the Service's Fishery Market News office in that city. Although this was an increase of 67 percent compared to February 24, 1943, it was a drop of 11 percent from January 26. Stocks of flounder and haddock fillets and scallops increased, while other species, including cod and rosefish fillets, mackerel, and shrimp declined. A drop of 546,000 pounds in mackerel stocks was the major change recorded.
Return of vessels to fishing after a two-month tie-up replenished some of the diminishing stocks following continuous withdrawals during the period of inactivity.
Whiting holdings in 13 cold-storage warehouses in Maine and Massachusetts amounted to 3,529,000 pounds on February 26. This was an increase of 2,281,000 pounds from February 27, 1943, but a decrease of 1,064,000 pounds from January 29. The whiting holdings consisted of the following: dressed, H & G fillets and skuljoes, 77 percent; round whiting, 23 percent; and animal food, less than of 1 percent.
COLD-STORAGE HOLDINGS OF FEBRUARY 24 IN CHICAGO SHOW SMALL GAINS
Cold-storage holdings on February 24 were 3 percent larger than those of January 27, and 45 percent over holdings a year earlier, according to the Service's Market News office in Chicago. Withdrawals of frozen salt-water fish and shellfish, including mainly cod and rosefish fillets, halibut, mackerel, whiting, and shrimp, were liberal during the four weeks ending February 24, but these were offset by heavy in-movement of winter-caught or prefrozen saugers, lake trout, pickerel, whitefish, and yellow pike.
In comparison to holdings on February 25, 1943, practically all important species except halibut and whiting showed substantial gains.
CANADIAN COLD-STORAGE HOLDINGS 29 PERCENT MORE ON MARCH 1 THAN YEAR AGO
Canadian cold-storage holdings on March 1, totaled 21,909,000 pounds of frozen fresh fish and 1,473,000 pounds of frozen smoked fish, according to a preliminary report furnished by the Dominion Bureau of Statistics. This represented an increase of 29 percent in holdings of frozen fresh fish and 39 percent in frozen smoked fish as compared with the same date the previous year. All items of frozen fresh fish except halibut and mackerel were held in greater quantity than a year ago.
CANADIAN FREEZINGS DURING FEBRUARY 11 PERCENT ABOVE YEAR AGO
Freezings of fishery products by Canadian freezers during February were 11 percent greater than the same month the preceding year, according to preliminary data furnished by the Dominion Bureau of Statistics. During February, 2,658,000 pounds of fresh fish were frozen as compared with 2,387,000 pounds a year ago. The leading items frozen during the month were cod fillets and sea herring.
Amendment 13 to MPR-364--Frozen Fish and Shellfish--establishes prices for the following species of fish caught in Canadian lakes other than Lake Superior, Lake Huron, Lake Erie, and Lake Ontario: whitefish, trout, suckers, tullibee, yellow perch, yellow pike, saugers, and pickerel, OPA announced March 29. These prices reflect the general average of prices established under the General Maximum Price Regulation.
Importers selling Canadian lake fish may add the actual transportation to their base price but in no event more than the actual carload rail rate from Winnipeg to the importer's receiving point. Winnipeg is the central gathering point for Canadian lake fish. Fillets are priced in line with frozen round fish but generally reflect General Maximum Price Regulation ceilings of American sellers. In general, the prices approximate the 1942 Canadian prices for frozen fish, f.o.b. Winnipeg.
The American importer will price by taking his specified mark-up to a given class of trade and applying it to the base price plus the transportation allowance plus duty. Provision is made for filleting in the United States by permitting the American processor to recover his transportation and duty charges.
This amendment also provides definitions for center cuts, head cuts and tail cuts. The definition of steak is modified and the definition of dressed fish is amended to include any portion of the dressed fish not otherwise designated. Such portions of dressed fish not specifically provided for will be priced at the dressed
1. Section 3 (e) is amended by inserting before the last sentence the following sentence:
For Canadian lake fish covered in Schedules Nos. 70-77, inclusive, there may be added the actual transportation cost (excluding local trucking, hauling and handling charges) from the point of shipment in Canada to the destination point in the United States but in no event more than the carload rail rate for frozen fish from the City of Winnipeg in the Province of Manitoba, Canada, to the destination point in the United States.
2. In section 12 after the definition of "Cellophane wrapped" the following two definitions are inserted:
"Center cut" or "Cut-center" means a cross section cut (not a head cut or tail cut from the middle portion of and not exceeding the length of the dressed fish.
"Chunk" or "Cut" means a cross section cut from the dressed fish not exceeding in thickness 1⁄2 the length thereof.
3. In section 12 the definition of "Dressed" is amended to read as follows:
"Dressed" means fish from which the head and viscera have been removed or any portion of such fish not otherwise designated.
4. In section 12 after the definition of "Gutted" the following definition is inserted:
"Head cut" or "Cut-head" means a cross section cut from the head end of the dressed fish.
5. In section 12 the definition of "Steak" is amended to read as follows:
"Steak" or "Slice" means a cross section not exceeding in thickness its largest
To reduce the maximum prices established for sales by processors and wholesalers of Conger eels, also known as ocean pouts and eelpouts, the OPA on March 30 issued Amendment 14 to MPR-364--Frozen Fish and Seafood. Prior to this amendment, the maximum base prices per pound for sales by processors were 15 cents, round; 17 cents, gutted; and 19 cents, skinned. These prices were set in the regulation at a time when there was no ceiling on the price of fresh Conger eels.
In a recent amendment to Maximum Price Regulation No. 418 (Fresh Fish and Seafood), a maximum price of 3 cents per pound, round, was fixed for sales of fresh Conger eels by producers, and a ceiling of 18 cents per pound, fillets, for sales by primary fish shipper wholesalers. Synchronizing the prices for the frozen fish with those recently set for the fresh are the maximum base prices per pound for sales by processors shown in the following excerpts from Amendment 14:
In the table of base prices in section 14, Schedule No. 10 is amended to read as follows:
Because the production of dressed smelt has been requested by the Quartermaster Corps on the West Coast, the OPA on March 28 issued Amendment 15 to MPR-364--Frozen Fish and Seafood. This amendment set maximum prices for sales of dressed smelt to Government agencies. These smelt are commonly known as Eulachon and are caught in the waters of and in the vi-cinity of the Columbia River. The maximum price is set at 21 cents per pound as packed to Government specifications. The price is f.o.b. the shipping point and no additional charge may be added for trucking, hauling or handling.
Ordinarily, smelt are sold round to the consumer who beheads and eviscerates them at The Army, however, finds it necessary to have the smelt prepared ready for cooking.
This item, therefore, is a specialty item and the price is set accordingly after a study of costs submitted by the industry. Since that item was developed exclusively for Government agencies to meet their particular needs, the sale of the product is restricted to such agencies.
A definition of "Government agency" is added for purposes of clarification.
The price of round Columbia River smelt is reduced by 3 cents per pound when the smelt are frozen without being washed and individually frozen or washed and layer packed. The present prices contemplated that the fish would be so repacked before freezing since that is the customary way of packing this product. To avoid the cost of such repacking, several companies have begun the practice of freezing the smelt as they come from the fisherman in the original container and without washing. This results in a reduced cost of packaging and in a greatly inferior product.
Maximum Price Regulation No. 364 is amended in the following respects:
1. The text of section 3 (f) is redesignated section 3 (f) (1), its headnote is changed to read "Sales to government agencies" and subparagraph (2) is added to read as follows:
(2) Sales of dressed smelts (Columbia River Eulachon) (Thaleichthys pacificus or any Argentinidae species). The maximum price for sales of dressed smelts (Columbia River Eulachon) (Thaleichthys pacificus or any Argentinidae species) to any government agency is 212 cents per pound. This price is f. o. b. the shipping point for dressed smelts packed
in a container of the customary size and
2. Section 12 is amended by inserting
"Government agency" means the United States Government or any department, agency, commission, corporation or other such instrumentality of the United States Government.
3. In the table of base prices in section 14, the name of Schedule No. 60 is amended and reference to footnote 9 is added thereto to read as follows: Smelts (Columbia River Eulachon) (Thaleichthys pacificus or any Argentinidae species)'
4. Footnote 9 is added at the end of the table of prices in section 14 to read as follows:
"The processor shall deduct 31⁄2 cents from the base price if he does not either wash and repack the smelts in layers or wash and individually freeze the smelts.
This amendment shall become effective March 28, 1944.
WFA ACTS TO FREE MORE COLD-STORAGE SPACE IN AMENDMENT 2 TO FD0-70
The War Food Administration on March 21 issued orders designed to hasten movement of certain foods from last year's production which still remain in cold-storage to make room for the inflow of perishable commodities from 1944 production. By far the largest portion of the total quantity of food in cold-storage warehouses, including those products to which the order specifically applies, is privately owned in regular commercial channels for civilian
The action, effective March 22, requires, among other things, that no commodity shall be stored in refrigerated storage facilities in excess of 10 months, unless specific authorization is obtained from the Director of Food Distribution. Another provision prevents the use of cold-storage facilities for canned fish and canned shellfish in hermetically-sealed containers (except frozen crabmeat and shrimp).
Cold-storage stocks of perishable commodities normally are largely depleted before new production starts to flow into storage. This year, however, there has been a strong tendency on the part of large commercial purchasers and users of food to pile up supplies in excess of normal requirements. Coupled with the need for space for handling Government supplies, this tendency has crowded refrigerated facilities to the point where certain foods have had to be removed from this type of storage and a continual outward movement of other foods encouraged. The WFA action supplements previous orders limiting the kinds and quantities of food which may be kept in cold-storage.
On March 1, 1944, U. S. public freezer space (below 30 degrees F.) was 92 percent occupied. This occupancy compares with 89 percent on February 1, and 64 percent on March 1, 1943. Occupancy of U.S. public cooler space (30 degrees and over) was 73 percent on March 1, 1944; 68 percent on February 1, 1944; and 57 percent on March 1, 1943. The recent action is provided in Amdt. 2 to FDO 70 and Amdt. 2 to FDO 70-1.
An excerpt from Amdt. 2 to FDO 70 follows: