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Seasonal favourites in shorter supply, and a little more expensive
For many in the Maritimes, Christmas isn't Christmas without fresh lobster and a real Christmas tree and both may be in shorter supply this year.
You might need to spend more on lobster because a low catch at sea means a high price on land.
“That's probably the highest price in December, the first week of December, that I have ever seen,” said lobster exporter Jiu Chang of Eastern Passage.
Chang is the president of a lobster exporting company and says the catch is down about 30 per cent so far this year.
Chang says that's likely due to the water temperature.
Districts 33 and 34 started their season later than usual this fall due to bad weather.
“Customers can expect to pay $12.50 per pound for a live lobster, and $13.25 per pound for a cooked lobster,” said Diana Hanus, the marketing director for a lobster retailer where employees are preparing for their busiest time of the year.
Even though the price may seem a little steep this season, people in the industry are not worried.
“Lobsters are a celebratory food, and with the holidays approaching, with Christmas and New Year, it's definitely a time when there's a high consumption of lobsters,” Hanus said.
So, whether you're planning to ship lobsters to loved ones across the country, or buy a few pounds from a local road-side truck keep in mind the high demand.
There is a similar situation with Christmas trees in our region.
Growers are seeing the effects of the early June frost on their supply.
“I think about 50 per cent of crops were damaged,” tree grower Gretchen Gerhardt.
“In our instance, we have a smaller family farm and half of ours were.”
Gerhardt says many growers on Nova Scotia's South Shore didn't ship as many trees internationally this year because of the low supply.
It meant a financial hit, but they wanted to make sure people around here could benefit first.
“I think most people were careful not to gouge too much, because you don't want to harm the customer, but you had to go up a little bit to compensate,” Gerhardt said.
Gerhardt is confident the industry will bounce back -- just like the fishermen are hoping for a better catch in the spring.
With files from CTV Atlantic’s Suzette Belliveau.