Mother Nature to blame for rising crawfish prices

SOUTH MISSISSIPPI (WLOX) - If you're thinking of heating up the boiler for a crawfish feast, it's going to cost you a little bit more this year.  Due to the unusually cold winter, mudbugs are scarce at coast seafood dealers. Because of that, prices are soaring.

Todd Rosetti is the Quality Seafood sales manager, and he believes that Mother Nature is to blame.

"Due to the harsh winter, the water temperature hasn't risen up enough for the crawfish to actually get active in the ponds." Rosetti explained.

He also gave us an idea of how much more a hot plateful of mudbugs will cost you.

"This year at Super Bowl, we were selling crawfish for over $5 dollars a pound on live crawfish. The market has just been unbearable."

So, are mudbug lovers surprised by the skyrocketing prices?

"Yeah, they're definitely noticing sticker shock to it, but people are going to buy it and that's just the supply and demand.  If they want them, they going to pay for them and it's not like we're seeing anything extra from it.  We're paying just as much as you are," said Curmis Broome who manages Broome's Market.

There are certain laws of economics that come into play every time money is exchanged. One of those is the law of supply and demand. According to Rosetti, that is clearly in play when it comes to crawfish this year.

"I don't think we're going to reach any great supply coming into Mardi Gras, and I think they're just going to hold the price up. Everybody that goes to New Orleans wants crawfish for Mardi Gras and the same thing here," said Rosetti.

For those who can't go without the delicacy, price doesn't matter. Just ask Stormin' Norman Lewis.

"I was born and raised in Biloxi right here and it really doesn't matter because I'm a seafood fan till I die. With crawfish, the prices went up just like gas but you got to eat this because we're from the gulf coast." Lewis exclaimed.

Seafood dealers do believe that there may be relief in sight, however. Once temperatures stay in the 50s during the overnight hours and the 60s and 70s during the day; the crawfish will become more active, leading to a bigger supply and falling prices.

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