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Maine bills aim to boost lobster industry



Published: Thu, February 28, 2013 @ 5:36 p.m.

Maine bills aim to boost lobster industry

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — Lawmakers are looking to boost Maine’s troubled lobster industry with proposals to pump more money into marketing the state’s signature seafood and give tax breaks to encourage more lobster processing.

The moves follow last year’s chaotic lobster fishing season that saw a market glut and a crash in wholesale prices.

One bill referred to the Marine Resources Committee calls for sharply increasing surcharges on lobster fishing and other lobster-related licenses over the coming three years, with the aim of raising about $3 million a year in promotional funding. This year’s marketing budget is about $380,000.

Lobsterman David Cousens, president of the Maine Lobstermen’s Association, thinks fisherman for the most part will grudgingly accept higher fees because they recognize the need to better promote lobster to get prices up.


Comments

1VINDYAK(1799 comments)posted 1 year, 10 months ago

Most of us have never visited the islands and harbors of Maine to see the local lobster trapping business first hand, but I have. Lobster meat used to be the poor man's diet. They grew into family businesses that, from increasing demand were so successful many others joined in and created the over-trapping dilemma they have today. There are only so many lobsters to catch and far too many trappers.

The reality is we will be paying more for lobster meat and if they do not control this business carefully, it could result in devastating consequences for the Maine Lobster families.

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