Lobster prices in New England have spiked to their highest level in more than a decade, thanks to expanding markets, robust processing activity and anticipated Labor Day weekend demand.

Trade publication SeafoodNews reports that the price for a 11/4-pound hard-shell lobster at the docks reached $8.50 this week, and new-shell lobster reached $6 – the highest August prices since 2005.

The price data, from commodity news reporting service Urner Barry, show that hard-shell prices are up 25 cents from the previous week, and new-shell up 50 cents, as retailers stock up for Labor Day weekend.

SeafoodNews attributed the price spike in large part to growth in the number and productivity of lobster processors in Maine and Massachusetts. It said there are “significantly more companies” engaged in lobster processing, and demand for their products is so high that they continue to compete with live lobster buyers even during periods of high demand such as the week leading up to Labor Day.

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