Oyster Prices High Going Into the Holidays - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Oyster Prices High Going Into the Holidays

CAMBRIDGE, Md.- It is not that oysters are impossible to find, but the amount caught simply isn't meeting the amount desired by consumers.

Josh Parker, owner of TL Morris Seafood in Trappe, said that balance has led to a jump in prices per bushel.

"It would be $65, which is $10 more than we were this time last year," said Parker.

But the good news for watermen and retailers is that they are still selling.

"They're still going as soon as anybody is getting them it seems like."

But he does not expect prices to drop before the holidays. It is not just an issue of oyster supply in Maryland that has led to the jump in prices, but also shortages in several maritime states like Louisiana, according to Harry Phillips at Russell Hall Seafood on Hoopers Island.

"Since the oil spill in Louisiana, that hurt down there real bad," Phillips said. "Louisiana was one of the big producers of oysters in the United States, and without them, and without them, it opens the door for us."

Maryland took advantage of that over the past few years with strong oyster harvests. This year's slowdown puts a wrinkle in that, but Phillips said the high prices are keeping our watermen in business.

"It's good for the guys that are catching them, and I guess it's not good for the consumer," he noted. "But with crude oil dropping, gas and diesel fuel at the pumps are getting cheaper so everyone has a little bit of extra money right now."

Even with the high prices, nothing seems to be getting in the way of Marylanders and their oysters.

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