Business owner fears oil might up need for imported seafood - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Business owner fears oil might up need for imported seafood

MOSS POINT, MS (WLOX) -

By Patrice Clark – bio | email

MOSS POINT, MS (WLOX) - Despite the president's reassurance Monday that Gulf seafood is safe and plentiful, some places that sell seafood worry that won't last for long. One Moss Point business owner is already considering stocking up on imported seafood.

Family Frozen Foods is one of the popular seafood spots in Moss Point. Thelma Scudder is in here every week shopping.

"Today, I got more catfish," Scudder said. 

 Scudder says it's hard to imagine not buying fresh, Gulf seafood from here. 

"I am a seafood lover, and that is basically what I eat," Scudder said.

Owner Brenda Sartin said with gallons of oil spewing in the Gulf minute by minute, the leak is gutting the seafood industry and her business. 

"When the local Gulf seafood runs out and it is diminished, we will have no other choice but to buy imported seafood," Sartin said. 

Right now, 90 percent of this stores seafood comes from the United States. Sartin says if she had to switch from domestic to imports, taste and safety will be two major concerns for customers. 

"It is regulated by the government and FDA. Of course, it is coming from foreign countries, so it is not going to be as fresh as our local Gulf Seafood." 

Sartin is also worried that if this local seafood runs out, she will have to spend a lot of money convincing people to buy this imported seafood. 

"We are going to have to have samples; we are going to have to promote it with sales." 

Sartin urges the Federal Government and BP to work fast to plug the hole, so businesses can keep that fresh, down home seafood in their freezers. 

"There has been a lot of money used on political shows. Stop oil from coming into the Mississippi Gulf Coast or any coast." 

Family Frozen Foods says it carries only 10 percent of imported seafood. The store expects the oil leak to drive up the price of imports. 

Copyright 2010 WLOX. All rights reserved.

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