Louisiana shrimpers getting set to return to work
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Steve Chiotakis: Tomorrow, Louisiana officials will meet to set the start of the fall shrimping season in the Gulf of Mexico. It’s a big step toward normal in a year that’s been anything but. Marketplace’s Adriene Hill has more.
Adriene Hill: Traditionally, fishermen get the go-ahead to start the fall shrimping season the third Monday of August. And even though a lot of fishing waters are still closed because of the spill, Martin Bourgeois with the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries says it’s a big deal:
Martin Bourgeois: Setting this fall season date is time to get our fisherman back to work, doing what they do best. It’s important to these fishing communities that the fishery stays profitable.
But Danny Babin, who manages a shrimp processing facility in Louisiana, doubts that all that many shrimpers are champing at the bit to get back out there. He says a whole lot of them and their boats are out working clean-up, getting paid a good wage by BP.
Danny Babin: They’re getting paid so much per day. When you go shrimping, if you don’t catch any shrimp you don’t make any money. If you catch a bumper crop, you make money. So I mean, it’s a gamble.
By working for BP, Babin says, the fisherman have a guaranteed paycheck — something that can be hard to turn down right now.
I’m Adriene Hill for Marketplace.
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