The Association of Seafood Producers says expectations for the price of crab this season appear to be out of sync with market realities.
In a news release issued Friday, executive director Derek Butler said negotiations with the Fish, Food and Allied Workers Union are set to begin next week.
“We’ve had a market analysis presented to us, we’ve had the conversations in Boston at the Seafood Show, and we’ve had individual conversations with harvesters around the province,” he said in the release. “And it’s fair to say expectations of prices along the lines of last year are simply unrealistic, due to big increases in the global supply of snow crab, mostly out of Alaska.”
Raw material prices for crab in 2011 were agreed upon by both groups at $2.15 per pound, and Butler suspects the price will be lower this year. However, he added the previous price was the highest experienced in years, having previously dropped to a low of approximately $0.90 per pound in 2005.
The crab season is set to begin the first week of April.