High prices could make US seafood eaters skimp on shrimp - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

High prices could make US seafood eaters skimp on shrimp

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SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) -

A shortage of imported shrimp into the U.S. is making for some high prices on the crustaceans, and some fish markets in Shreveport are feeling the pinch.

"The prices for shrimp are constantly going up," said 20/20 Seafood Manager Frank Datcher.

Datcher said his market used to buy shrimp for around $10 a pound, but now the going rate is $13. Despite the increase, the restaurant has not raised prices.

"They get used to one price, and when they see the prices rising they seem to want to stop coming," Datcher said of customers.

It's the lack of imported shrimp nationwide that is forcing prices up.

"Southeast Asian markets produce farm-raised shrimp and flood the markets here. Kind of keeps the price down," said Randy Pausina of the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries.

He said about 90 percent of the shrimp sold in the U.S. are imported, and despite the customer savings, American shrimpers don't want too much to come in.

That would drain their profit too much.

"Been fighting in Congress in Washington to limit that," Pausina said. "Put tariffs to control it because that's what really controls the price."

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