Production is a non issue for the struggling Louisiana shrimping industry.
“The issue is we are getting forty to eighty percent less than we should be getting per pound,” said George Barisich, President of the United Commercial Fisherman Association.
Louisiana shrimpers say that import prices are forcing the prices of locally caught shrimp to exceptionally low levels.
“I actually got more for shrimp 25 years ago, per pound, than I’m getting now,” said Barisich.
Barisich says that normally, opening day of shrimp season is an exciting one.
“Now you see an aura of disgust and a lot of people are not even making the opening,” said Barisich.
In the past, shrimpers have looked to state government officials to conquer their problems.
“It hasn’t gotten better, it’s actually gotten worse,” said Barisich.
A group of officials within the industry took their concerns to us representative Steve Scalise on Monday.
“I said we need you to lead the charge, we need a gladiator,” said Barisich.
Time will tell if Scalise can help get this 2.3 billion dollar a year production back on track.
I”m going out today hoping to slam dunk them so I can make a profit, but I’m going to church Sunday to ask the lord for divine intervention to help us on this one, said Barisich.