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171% mark up on snow crab

Updated: Jul 3, 2021

Ocean Choice International frozen snow crab was selling this afternoon at Sam’s Club in Orlando, Florida for $16.60/lb US, or $20.41/lb Cdn.

That’s a 171% mark up from the most recent $7.53/lb price paid to Newfoundland and Labrador inshore harvesters for the crab they land.

It's worth noting, that same box of snow crab at Sam’s was selling this morning for $14.90/lb US, but the price jumped by $1.70/US (11%) within a couple of hours. The store manager said the increase was due to demand from the July 4th weekend.

Here in Newfoundland and Labrador, the provincial government-appointed Fish Price Setting Panel set the price of crab paid to inshore harvesters at $7.60/lb on April 25th. (The price is recalibrated weekly based on the US/Canada exchange rate, dipping as low as $7.46/lb.)

Between then and now, reports say the market price of crab has increased every single week. The price paid to harvesters has not.

That's because under the panel system of price setting, the FFAW had used up its one price appeal to land the $7.60/lb price.

Under such a panel system, inshore harvesters are not paid the best possible price for their product.

Not even close.

For that reason, and others, the panel system of setting fish prices doesn’t work.

Ryan Cleary,


Independent licensed owner-operators are encouraged to join SEA-NL here. These blog posts will be public for a limited time, before becoming exclusive to the membership.

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