Calif. Dungeness season still on hold

Seafood lovers pining to catch, sell and eat fresh crab may have to wait a bit longer after a task force of fishing industry representatives said Tuesday they would prefer to open the commercial Dungeness season only when the spindly crustaceans are deemed safe to eat everywhere in California.

The recommendation by the California Dungeness Crab Task Force — driven in part by a desire to buoy consumer confidence — comes less than a week after Thursday’s lifting of a three-month ban on recreational crab fishing, but only south of Point Reyes and with the directive that the guts be removed before dining.

The California Department of Fish and Wildlife is expected to make a decision within the next two days on whether to partially open the commercial Dungeness season or wait until the coast is clear of domoic acid, the potentially deadly neurotoxin that has been found in crabs. The fishing ban continues for rock crabs, which health officials say remain unsafe to eat.

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About the author

Jessica Hathaway

Jessica Hathaway is the editor in chief of National Fisherman. She has been covering the fishing industry for 13 years, serves on the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute’s Communications Committee and is a National Fisheries Conservation Center board member.

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