‘Lite’ lobster offers solution

Letters to the Editor (The Guardian)
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Editor:  It appears no one is solving any of the problems facing the Island lobster fishery: low prices, a labour shortage for the processors when they buy the lobster and a glut on the market.

I’m sure some have read the article “Lobster Trails” in the May issue of Herald magazine where market lobsters from the south shore of Nova Scotia are ending up in a high-class restaurant in Las Vegas to the tune of 1,000 to 2,000 pounds a week, selling for $89 a plate.

Sounds like a long way from the woes of P.E.I. fishermen trying to get a couple bucks for their canners.

We’ve got tons (literally) of small lobsters here on P.E.I. Processors don’t want to pay much for them. Lobster suppers are getting about $30 for a one-pound lobster dinner, right?

Maybe it’s time to change strategy. Looking at the tremendous success of Burger Love, I feel a lot of the success (besides the great Island beef) was the marketing. Why not create a brand new product, call it something like ‘Lobster Lite’? Get those smart marketers to push the idea of a smaller, lower-calorie meal that should be on the plates of North Americans. This would be an ideal time to start something new.

Diners in New York, Chicago and, yes, Las Vegas would not only see Island Blue Mussels on the menu, but also “PE.I. Lobster Lite” where people can still indulge in the delicacy of lobster, but without a threat to their pants size or wallet. Remember that $89 plate in Las Vegas? Well, maybe this could be a $59 plate. That should cover everyone’s expenses.

A lot of current ads are for P.E.I. lobster suppers with “all you can eat salads, desserts, etc.” Kind of ’90s advertising, isn’t it? You can’t tell me our fishermen aren’t as creative as our beef producers. All the so-called experts say the money is in value-added products. Well, a whole canner on a restaurant plate has more value than in a can of meat heading for a freezer.

Lloyd Kerry,

Charlottetown

Organizations: Herald magazine

Geographic location: Las Vegas, Iceland, Nova Scotia New York Chicago Charlottetown

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