Lobster sellers aren't catching export prices
New Brunswick's lobster exports are valued at $475M
New Brunswick lobster continues to be the top seafood export in the country, but people who sell lobster in the province say they aren't seeing the returns.
According to the federal fisheries department, lobster is now Canada's most valuable seafood export.
And New Brunswick's lobster exports are valued at $475 million.
But a restaurant would go broke if it depended on lobster revenue, said Stephan Müller, executive chef at the Delta Beausejour in Moncton.
"Let's say you go into the grocery stores of the markets and see them for $10 per pound. By the time I buy a pound and a half of lobster it costs me $15 dollars. I've got to sell it in the restaurant for about $30, $40, it all depends, but that doesn't mean that I necessarily have a $30 profit," said Müller.
"I got a lot of expenses. I keep the lobsters in a tank, sometimes you get a few of them that die, there's a lot of other costs associated with it, so we don't automatically make a $30 profit on a $45 lobster."
Maurice Guimon, who works at the Moncton Fish Market, said, with price fluctuations and processing costs, he's lucky if he makes a five to 10 per cent profit.
"It's a tough racket," said Guimon.
Provincial Fisheries Minister Michael Olscamp returned Tuesday from the Boston Seafood Show. The goal of his trip was to secure more contracts for lobster.
"There's no doubt about it, we feel good about it," said Olscamp.