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Warm winter spurs crawfish crop, keeps prices low for Mardi Gras

Jonathan Menard -   Jan 31, 2013

A warm winter has produced a plentiful crop of crawfish, which is a huge plus for local dealers considering the demand brought by the Super Bowl and Mardi Gras.

Erik Donnaud, the manager of The Seafood Pot in Destrehan, said crawfish season usually gets a jolt after Lent, but this year the season got off to a faster start due to the excitement created by the Super Bowl.

"This is unusual because we had parades, the Super Bowl and now we have Mardi Gras coming up," he said. "The season has gotten off to a great start."

Donnaud said there was a slight shortage of crawfish two weeks ago, but that the supply has improved since then.

"It hasnít gotten too cold this winter and that has helped the crop," he said. "Weíve had a stretch of real good weather, so I think thatís going to continue."

Donnaud said the price has remained lower than usual at this time when compared to previous years. Usually the price doesnít drop until after Lent. The Seafood Pot is currently selling a pound of live crawfish for $2.49 and a pound of boiled for $3.49

Donnaud said The Seafood Pot delivered more than 40 sacks of crawfish for the Super Bowl alone and that they even brought some to local legend Ed Reed, safety for the Baltimore Ravens.

"We fed Ed Reed, the defensive backs and coaches for the Ravens," Donnaud said. "They had crawfish, shrimp and chicken andouille gumbo."

Hebertís Seafood in Boutte is also selling a pound of live crawfish for $2.49 and a pound of boiled for $3.49. Willie Hebert said calls began pouring in to the seafood store on Friday before the Super Bowl.

"People are starting to call and itís looking real good for us for the next two weeks," he said. "I donít think we are going to have a problem meeting the demand."

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