March 14, 2014
New technology and tactics can stem the intrusion of foreign shrimp onto American plates, state seafood officials preached at the LSU AG Center's second annual Louisiana Fisheries Summit held in Houma this week.
More than 250 commercial fishermen, seafood dealers, processors and others gathered at the Houma-Terrebonne Civic Center to hear of the latest technologies and theories on sustaining Louisiana's $2 billion seafood industry.
For years, foreign imports have been the enemy of local fishermen, with only 10 percent of the shrimp eaten domestically actually coming from the U.S., said Don Schwab, of Bayou Barataria Foods, a Lafitte shrimp processor.
Last year, local fishermen got some relief on that downward push on prices. Disease decimated foreign seafood supplies, leading to some of the highest prices local shrimpers have seen for the product.
“You can expect higher prices in May,” Schwab said. “They are not going to be as high as they were, but they will still be high.”