Feasibility of a new fishery in Baja California, Mexico based on the red crab Pleuroncodes planipes: preliminary economic evaluation and risk assessment
Centro de Investigaciones Biológicas del Noroeste (CIBNOR), Mar Bermejo
195, Col. Playa Palo de Santa Rita, La Paz, Baja California Sur 23090, Mexico
Corresponding author: firstname.lastname@example.org
Accepted: 23 March 2006
A preliminary economic evaluation of the feasibility of establishing a fishery to process red crab meal (Pleuroncodes planipes) was conducted. Risk assessment indicated that a fishery of nine boats could operate with an average 1.53 benefit-cost ratio (B C−1) and annual net revenues (NR) of US$427 840, and that there is certainty of obtaining economic profit in every season, with a B C−1 > 1 and NR > 0. Total catch and average catch per trip could be reduced from a total baseline catch of 10 328 tons (1735 t meal) to 6061 (1844 t meal), and from a baseline catch per trip of 11.4 t (4.78 t meal) to 6.73 tons (4.85 t meal) without economic losses. There was no possibility for profit when total catch and average catch per trip were, respectively, lower than 5365 t (1648 t meal) and 5.96 t (4.71 t meal). For a single-fishing trip operation, average B C−1 was 1.5 and NR was US$480. We determined that there was a confidence level of 84% to generate profits. To guarantee profits, a catch of 13.5 t per trip (1.35 t meal) should be obtained. Single trips catching less than 3.3 t (0.94 t meal) cannot make a profit. Sensitivity analysis indicated that plant processing efficiency for converting fresh red crab to meal, catch per trip, and sales price of red crab meal were most important in determining B C−1 and NR values. Plant efficiency constitutes the main element that needs to be optimized, particularly management practices to preserve fresh catch quality. A low sensitivity to costs for processing suggests the possibility of negotiating a higher price and the opportunity for processing plants to venture into processing of red crab meal.
Key words: Red crab / Pleuroncodes planipes / Galatheidae / Fishery / Economic evaluation / Mexico
© EDP Sciences, IFREMER, IRD, 2006