Hurricane Michael affects seafood industry; Impact anticipated in Birmingham metro area

Brad Yellock works for Inland Seafood--a major distributor based in Ensley

Hurricane Michael affects seafood industry; Impact anticipated in Birmingham metro area
GF Default - Hurricane Michael 5 p.m. update

BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - Those dining at the Fish Market and other Birmingham restaurants for lunch Wednesday had no problems getting their seafood of choice.

But thanks to Hurricane Michael, that may change over the next few days.

“If you're in the mood for gulf seafood this weekend, you may not see some of your favorite items on the menu,” says Brad Yellock.

He works for Inland Seafood which is a major distributor based in Ensley. The storm’s impact not just hitting homes hard, but those in the seafood industry as well.

“A lot of the boats are having to shift west, a lot of them came in, a lot of them are stuck. A lot of oyster farmers have pulled back their baskets,” Yellock explains.

He says the impact could hit the pocketbook for a little while, “We could see some pricing increases in your market right after this. It’s a supply and demand thing.”

He’s closely watching the storm as is George Sarris, who owns the Fish Market Restaurant in southside Birmingham. He gets a lot of his seafood from the Gulf Coast.

“Some products it’s 100 percent, like oysters, crab meat, most of the shrimps,” he says. “Fish, you’ve got the snapper, and the grouper and all this stuff. 90 percent comes from there."

He’s already prepared to adjust but is also looking at the bigger picture.

“We’ll get it from Miami, East Coast, from the Texas side of the gulf. We’ll be okay, really,” he says. “As long as everybody is safe, no loss of life--what the heck---we’re going to go through. It’s small potatoes."

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