National Fisherman


NEW ORLEANS -- One of the dishes people are getting at the Jazz Fest is Louisiana crab. But everyone along that food chain, from the fisherman to the suppliers to the restaurants, are saying crabs are hard to come by.

It's slim pickings at a local seafood shop for Louisiana blue crabs. Suppliers who usually get two dozen crabs per trap got only one crab in every two traps.

And it looks like they've been on a crash diet, little fat or meat.

"It costs me $43 a dozen for these crabs, live. My cost after I graded them and sold them, I got back $24 because they were skinny and I sold the big crab as a small crab," said Henry Poinot, president of Big Fisherman Seafood on Magazine Street.

Poinot used to be a commercial fisherman and he says the cooler weather we've been enjoying for our spring festivals is not for the crabs.

"The water's still cold. Last week it was in the 40s again, so the lake has warmed up, but it hasn't warmed up quite enough. When it's cold, they just bury in the mud and they just, their heart rate slows down and they just live off their body fat," Poinot explained.

At Galatoire's restaurant in the French Quarter, the staff is getting ready for the dinner crowd. And you can't do Galatoire's without doing crab meat.

"Crabmeat Maison, Crabmeat Yvonne, crabmeat everywhere," said Michael Sichel, the executive chef of Galatoire's Restaurant on Bourbon Street. "You have no idea. We go through almost 500 pounds of crabmeat a week here."

Read the full story at WWLTV>>

Inside the Industry

The following was released by the Maine Department of Marine Resources on Jan. 22:

The Maine Department of Marine Resources announced an emergency regulation that will support the continued rebuilding effort in Maine’s scallop fishery. The rule, effective January 23, 2016, will close the Muscle Ridge Area near South Thomaston and the Western Penobscot Bay Area.

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Louisiana’s Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, which governs commercial and recreational fishing in the state, got a new boss in January. Charlie Melancon, a former member of the U.S. House of Representatives and state legislator, was appointed to the job by the state’s new governor, John Bel Edwards.

Although much of his non-political work in the past has centered on the state’s sugar cane industry, Melancon said he is confident that other experience, including working closely with fishermen when in Congress, has prepared him well for this new challenge.

Read more...
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