The Boston Globe reports that due to a combination of iced-over Canadian lobster fisheries, high demand and several nor’easters in March, a lobster shortage is upon us.
Whole hard-shell lobster prices have nearly doubled to $15 per pound. Last year, live lobster by the pound sold for as little as $8. As for pre-shucked meat restaurants purchase for lobster rolls, it’s selling for $8 more this year, bringing the price to $40 per pound.
Naturally, menu prices are reflecting the shift in price. The average lobster roll in Boston goes for $24; however, this year, some chefs have had to charge as high as $49 apiece. Some restaurants, like Island Creek Oyster Bar and Boston Chops, have gone so far as to take lobster off the menu entirely.
According to The Boston Globe, March and April are generally poor months for lobster fishing. The government also only allows a quarter of Maine’s lobstermen to work during this time to prevent overfishing. This limit has put more pressure on the Canadian supply, which has also experienced an extremely cold winter, making it difficult for fishing boats to stay out at sea for long periods of time.
With the weather warming up, it’s possible that operations will return to normal. But until then, expect to spend a little more for your lobster rolls. Or, make this very cost-effective, totally vegan version.