Lobster Capital Maine Still Feeling the Pinch Despite Slightly Recovering Lobster Prices

Expand | Collapse
(Photo: Wikimedia Commons/Roberto Rodríguez)A lobster is seen in this file photo.

In the lobster capital of the United States, Maine, many had thought that with tourism booming this year, and lobster being as popular as ever, then lobster fisherman would be having a great time. However, that has not turned out to be the reality, according to reports this week.

The price of lobsters has failed to recover from last year's lows, and fisherman in the region who rely heavily on lobster are feeling the pinch.

Realizing that something has to be done, community leaders have recently been reported as pushing a new concept that Maine must become less heavily reliant on lobster alone, and must chase after other fish life so the recovery in the area can continue and also be more sustained.

Incentives are now being created so that fishermen go after a variety of "high-quality" fish life.

It has also been reported that the removal of the Maine river dams will allow fish, including the endangered Atlantic salmon, to return to the fishing grounds for Maine's finest.

Robin Alden, a longtime fisheries management expert and former Maine commissioner of marine resources has said, "Long term, that's not a stable situation to have very few, other species and so much lobster," according to NBC News.

Lobster has been in abundant supply this summer, ensuring that prices remain low. Last summer of course prices dropped to record lows of just $2 a pound. However, although those prices have recovered somewhat, they are still painfully low for fishermen in the region, and has been selling off the boat for as low as $2.20 a pound this summer.

Eight years ago the price of lobsters off the boat were averaging about $4.60 per pound, but those highs have plummeted down to below 50 percent, according to Main fisheries landing data.

It now appears Maine is moving to make the region less reliant on one species from the ocean to ensure a more sustained and effective recovery.