(Adds quotes, background)
OSLO, Aug 24 (Reuters) - The price of Norwegian farmed salmon is expected to rise from a nine-month low next week to about 51-52 Norwegian crowns per kilo, an increase of 3-4 crowns, as buyers take advantage of low prices to build up stocks, industry sources said on Friday.
“Our customers are freezing a lot of fish, it seems reasonable as we expect higher prices later in the year,” said one exporter who declined to be named.
“We expect prices to rise by 3-4 crowns to about 51-52 crowns next week,” he added.
This week prices were at about 48 crowns per kilo, the lowest since November of last year.
A salmon producer confirmed prices were up 3-4 crowns on average for delivery next week. The per-kilo increase was biggest for the large fish sizes, while prices for smaller fish remain under pressure amid ample supply, the producer added.
In the second quarter, the price of salmon peaked at about 80 crowns per kilo before declining.
Average production costs for whole fish, including the cost of harvesting, stood at 34.36 crowns per kilo in 2017, or 0.12 crowns lower than in 2016, according to data from the Norwegian Directorate of Fisheries.
Norway is the world’s top salmon producer, with fish farming the country’s second-largest export industry after oil and gas. The share price of listed farming companies depends heavily on changes in the price of fish.
Leading Norwegian producers include Marine Harvest, Salmar, Leroy Seafood, Grieg Seafood and Norway Royal Salmon. (Reporting by Ole Petter Skonnord, editing by Terje Solsvik)