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OSLO, Dec 23 (Reuters) - The average price of Norwegian farmed salmon is seen to fall slightly next week from a near record levels this week as the trading slows down during the holiday season.
Norway is the world's top salmon exporter, with leading producers including Marine Harvest, Salmar, Leroy Seafood, Grieg Seafood and Norway Royal Salmon.
Average salmon prices for next week are down to around 70-72 crowns ($8-$8.3) from 75-76 crowns per kilo last week, remaining close to record levels amid strong demand and lack of supply, traders said.
"The prices have come slightly down this week from last weeks high levels. We now buy salmon at around 4 crowns less per kilo this week compared to last week, an industry sources told Reuters on Friday.
Some said such high prices were unsustainable and were expected to fall significantly in January.
"We assume (prices to fall to) 65 crowns per kilo for the smallest fish of 2-3 kilo next week and in the high 70s for the fish up to 6 kilos," one producer, who declined to be named, said.
One exporter said he expected an average price of 70-72 crowns for fish of 3-6 kilo next week.
Salmon prices have been volatile this year, hitting a record of 80 crowns per kilo in July, but then dropping to just above 50 crowns before rebounding towards the year's end.
Production costs in Norway have risen sharply in recent years to around 30-31 crowns per kilo on average.
Companies and analysts have predicted that the global supply of salmon will fall by 6-7 percent in 2016 due to declining production in Norway as well as in Chile, the world's second largest producer. ($1 = 8.7065 Norwegian crowns) (Reporting by Joachim Dagenborg, editing by Nerijus Adomaitis)