Crabbers split price difference, end strike

A crab fishers’ association on strike over the wholesale price per pound of Dungeness crab in Northern California reached a compromise with Pacific Seafood, a spokesman for the company said Friday.

Dan Occhipinti, general counsel at Pacific Seafood Group, said the strike ended after the parties involved agreed on a price of $2.875 per pound:

“It’s great to see the fishing community come together and find a solution that recognizes the market challenges we all face. … Today is a good result that gets the fishermen back on the water and fresh Dungeness crab on dinner tables.”

The strike began last Friday when Pacific Seafood attempted to lower the price to $2.75 after crabbers in the area had been getting $3, according to Ken Bates, a spokesman for the Humboldt Fishermen’s Marketing Association.

Bates was not immediately available for comment Friday, but the association issued statements earlier this week indicating that fishing crews were concerned the price-drop could depress crab prices for years.

“Pacific Group may have believed that the fishermen in the ports of Fort Bragg, Eureka, and the minor ports of Shelter Cove and Point Arena would just roll over and accept the lowered price offered by Pacific Group,” the fishers association said, but instead they went on strike — eventually securing Friday’s 12.5-cent increase.