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   Early Season Bay Scallop Prices Slump
by Jack Shea, The Martha's Vineyard Times
Posted: Friday, November 20, 2009 at 4:00PM EST

Consumers are happy, many scallopers are not, and Island seafood retailers are busy in the wake of an unexpected 40-to 50-percent drop in early season wholesale and retail scallop prices.

Retail prices in the $13-$14 per pound range this week mark an increase from lows of $11 per pound 10 days ago, a price that had consumers scrambling to buy large orders and freeze them. Retail prices last year topped out at $21 a pound, Island markets said. Prices paid scallopers reached a low of $6 a pound two weeks ago, half the 2008 rate.

Plummeting Island prices result from massive - and unusual - competition from the Chatham on Cape Cod and from Long Island, New York fisheries, plus a strong Nantucket harvest. Prices also reflect declining demand from recession-buffeted restaurants wary about pricey entrees, such as scallops, market-watchers say.

To read the rest of the story, please go to: The Martha's Vineyard Times


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