Friday, April 30, 2010

Oil spill: Beyond shrimp

Louisiana opened a special shrimp season yesterday so shrimpers can try to harvest what they can before the oil washes ashore. But shrimp supplies this summer won't be the only thing you may see in short supply.

I got this late Thursday from Sysco's daily report on food supply and prices, quoting John Yates, seafood buyer for Buckhead Beef:

"Gulf Everything: shrimp, oysters, grouper, snapper, etc- basically the whole kit and caboodle. If this oil spill doesn’t calm down, we could be in for some real trouble. I just spoke with Leavin’s Oysters of Apalachicola and he said his last report was that signs of the spill were 30-40 miles off his main harvest areas. For the here and now, we will get our regular supply of oysters this Sunday as they are digging frantically to stock up. I have a bead on 4-5 Panhandle boats that are packing out this weekend for a good shot of day boat groupers and snappers."

On the bright side, Sysco also reports that supplies of European salmon are returning after the volcano disrupted that traffic. But there's still a lot of Chilean salmon filling in the supply gaps.