The Maine Sunday Telegram has explained why only a limited part of the Maine scallop makes it on to the dish and reports on a new aquaculture operation that may change that.
December into April is the season when wild Atlantic sea scallops can be pulled from state-regulated waters in the Gulf of Maine both by divers and mechanical drags for our dining delight. Maine scallops are both delicious and pricey, but few of us realize that half of the scallop is chucked out at sea even though it’s perfectly edible.
This might also explain why it’s illegal in Maine to serve scallops on their shell in Maine.
Today’s Maine Sunday Telegram traces the oysters “journey from sea to table”.
Customers may not know where Basket Island is – a 10-acre island one mile southwest of Cousins Island, owned by Chebeague & Cumberland Land Trust – or the specific origins of any of the other 11 Maine-grown oysters on Eventide’s menu. They might know only that slightly sweet oyster they slurped down with a flavored ice or a red wine mignonette is local, of Maine. And delicious.
But how did it get to their table? How long was its journey and what did it entail?
The New York Times has published an article on the Maine Shrimp fishery. Sam Hayward, Don Lindgren and Glen Libby are all featured in this article by Mary Pols.
So far, according to scientists who survey the Gulf of Maine annually, it hasn’t. Their most recent data show Northern shrimp numbers at a historic low for the 34 years in which they have been counting the crustacean, Pandalus borealis. Egg production is down. Survival rates for larvae are poor.
The Maine Sunday Telegram checked in with Portland restaurants to learn how they are adapting to the multi-year closure of the Maine shrimp fishery.
For the fifth year in a row, the sweet little morsels likely won’t appear on Maine restaurant menus. At a time when chefs are more focused than ever on local ingredients, what will they do without these winter delicacies – especially when it looks as if they may never come back?
The Press Herald has published an article on Maine’s oyster aquaculture industry.
Now new farmers trying their hand at growing oysters have moved outside the Damariscotta River – farms small and large can be found along the entire coast, from the Piscataqua River in Eliot to Little Machias Bay in Cutler. Pushing the expansion is demand. Oyster landings have increased 254 percent and the harvest’s value has grown about 300 percent since 2011, state records show.
Here’s some wonderful news about the resurgence of river herring in Maine rivers and its potential to positively impact stocks of cod, halibut and other species.
With nearly 3.8 million fish counted at its fish passages this year, the Kennebec is now home to one of the largest river herring runs in North America, and Maine is likely to become the two species’ worldwide epicenter as the herring colonize newly opened habitat. The Penobscot saw 1.9 million, on par with last year, while the St. Croix’s 158,000-fish run was the largest in two decades.
Close on the heels of the BDN’s article on this topic earlier this week, the Press Herald has published an article about the price of lobster meat.
Wintry weather and a cool spring have limited supply, as lobsters have stayed put offshore and lobstermen have stayed home, waiting for the lobsters to migrate closer to shore with warmer water. Add in the international competition for Maine lobster in Europe and Asia, and lobster prices are becoming harder than ever to predict.
The Bangor Daily News has published an article on the price of lobster.
In the U.S., Maine constitutes 80 percent of lobster landings. Last year the state landed 130 million pounds of lobsters. Some stay here, but increasingly a great deal are exported abroad.
That means family-run businesses like Red’s Eats compete for price, not just with the lobster stand one bridge over, but with their counterparts in China.
The Maine Sunday Telegram reports on an interesting effort to apply Venetian fishing practices in Maine to create a green crab fishery.
Moleche, anyone? A group of Georgetown fishermen and others are getting expert advice from Venice, Italy, to turn a rampant threat to Maine’s fisheries into a marketable part of the solution.
The Blueberry Files has published a report on the Nonesuch Oyster Tour.
Last month a friend of mine came to visit Maine, and we used that as an excuse to check out the Nonesuch Oyster aquaculture tours that owner Abigail Carroll has started offering. Carroll’s farm is located in the Nonesuch River off of scenic Pine Point in Scarborough. Her oysters can be found occasionally on Portland raw bar menus and at Harbor Fish Market. They’re characterized by their green shells and grassy flavors, which we learned all about why that is on our afternoon tour.
You can sign-up for a Nonesuch touch on Eventbrite.