June 23 , 2019
This week at Libbey’s -
Oh Boy, Where to start?
Bob will be making Pork & Lamb sausages this week.
Jon has fresh locally raised pork & fresh western lamb hanging in the walk in cooler.
We plan to get some USDA Choice Graded Tri-Tip by Thursday. For those who are not familiar, tri-tip comes from the bottom sirloin & is very popular out west for grilling & smoking. It is a muscle that is about 3 - 4 lbs on average, very tender especially when slow cooked & it has great flavor.
We will have both Baby Back & St. Louis Style Spare Ribs this week.
We have unfortunately had a couple of disappointed regular customers in the past 2 weeks. They came in expecting their favorite cut of meat and we were out. One person was looking for T-bones & the other was looking for Rib Steaks the week before. We do our very best to keep as many items in stock as possible. It is a tricky balancing act to keep products fresh - don’t buy too much - and having it in stock - don’t run out. The biggest thing you can do to help us with this is to order ahead if you know you are going to want a particular item. This time of year we could go an entire week and not sell 20 T-bones. Sometimes it can take us 2 weeks to sell 20 T-bones. This past Saturday we had a customer from out of town walk in & order 18 - 2 inch T-bones & 12 - 2 inch Rib Steaks. It was a great order & we appreciate the business but it wiped us out of T-bones until we get fresh on Monday. Even if you don’t want your steaks until Saturday, if you know you want them on Wednesday - call us! We won’t cut them until Saturday but we will make sure that you are covered before we fill any walk in orders.
This coming week is NEMBA FEST ! From Thursday until Sunday over 4000 mountain bikers, literally from all over the world, will be coming to Darling Hill in Lyndonville. Almost doubling the local population puts a lot of strain on the infrastructure of the area. As the organizers have added more food vendors over the years we have seen less business in our store than the first couple of years. That’s OK ! It was a little overwhelming at first, but now we seem to be able to staff & prepare sufficiently to keep things moving through the week. This coming weekend is also a Canadian long weekend & the beginning to our Independence Day celebrations. Our coolers are going to be stocked full of delicious products for your get togethers. Calling in your orders - more than 10 minutes ahead - will keep your wait times to a minimum. Thank you in advance !
Folks have noticed that we have not been bringing in fresh lobsters yet this year. We are still trying to work with our connections in Maine but this season comes with some tough news for lobstermen - especially the small ones. I will try to keep this explanation simple but the surrounding issues are very complex. As ocean waters warm & currents change fish species follow their food source around the ocean. They have no regard for international boundaries, states rights or our economy. Wildlife biologists test seafood populations in specified areas drawn on a map and recommend quotas based on these numbers for these specific areas called fishing grounds. In recent years very small plankton, which feeds the majority of sea creatures either directly or indirectly, have moved further off shore in search of the needed water temperatures and oxygen content. The bait fish follow them - the bigger fish follow them - and the species that pick up the scraps, follow them. The result is that the old established fishing grounds are seeing dwindling numbers of fish and many have been closed to fishing. This has driven up the price of bait for all fishermen. What cost $30 three years ago is over $120 this year, if you can even find it. At the same time the trap line regulations have been changed to protect the Right Whale. The federal government is attempting to cut in half all of the vertical lines in the ocean thus lowering the Right Whale’s chance to get tangled and die. In order to do this the new regulations dictate that within a mile or so of shore lobstermen must have a minimum of 4 traps per vertical buoy line. The next area up to 10 miles out must have 10 traps per line & outside of 10 miles must have 40 traps per line. At times in the past fishermen I have known have traveled 2 - 3 hours off shore in search of lobsters. This can easily put you 15 - 20 miles out. The two most glaring issues are that no one is catching many lobsters in close anymore - even when they are shedding . They are just staying in deeper, colder water where their food is. The second issue is that most one to two man lobster boats can only lift 4 traps maximum with their current equipment. Bigger winches take a bigger boat. These men & women are now forced to decide whether to upgrade their boats, potentially taking on debt that they cannot repay or selling off their boats and equipment & going out of business. This while all expenses are going up - bait, labor, fuel, etc…Of course as more businesses go out the value of their possessions drops and they will in many cases not be able to pay off the debt on their current loans even after selling off their assets. That is where our friend and business partner is right now. He is looking at the beginning of July and has no traps in the water, trying to figure out why he should renew his federal license if he can’t fish in federal waters. All the time just beyond our federal jurisdiction huge factory ships from every country in the world are scooping up all the seafood they want unfettered by our regulations. In fact several countries are still hunting Right Whales ! The same Whales we are putting our lobstermen out of business to protect. I predict that the only lobster fishermen out there will be on factory type boats & consumer prices will reach unprecedented highs. Unless you are a huge chain store that can sell lobster at a loss in order to get customers in the door. If you notice you can see this trend in all business segments. Most new restaurants nationwide are chain restaurants or part of a larger conglomerate - department stores, the same. Even in the service industry many employers are “outsourcing” their labor to larger companies who can better absorb the rising expenses of doing business in America. I don’t know what the answer is but I hope we figure it out soon!
As for lobsters at Libbey’s Meat Market - we are trying to put together a run to Maine before July 4th, I will keep you posted. This may however be our only run to Maine for the season.
Have a great week & thank you for choosing Libbey’s !
Fresh Seafood recommendations for the Week of 6/23/19
Prices can and will change daily
Live Shellfish must be picked up on the day it comes in .
Freshness of product will not be guaranteed past delivery day. $ / LB
WC Fresh 1 1/4 lb hard shell lobsters $13.21
WC Sockeye Frozen - Must buy whole side approx 1 1/2 - 2 lb $19.29
WC Fresh Wild Caught Sockeye Salmon $21.86
FR Faroe Island Scottish Salmon $18.83
FR Canadian Salmon $15.75
FR Halibut $21.33
WC #1 (sushi grade) Yellow Fin Tuna $28.08
WC 2+ Yellow Fin Tuna $20.92
WC Swordfish $14.42
WC Monkfish $8.25
FR Catfish Fillet $12.42
WC Fresh Squid - tubes & tentacles $12.83
WC Flounder 4 - 6 oz fillets $19.67
WC Dover Sole (California) $13.83
WC Lemon Sole $20.75
WC Small Haddock 4 - 8 oz $10.17
WC Scrod Haddock 6 - 8 oz $13.17
WC Haddock 12 - 16 oz $22.58
WC Market Cod $16.00
WC Cod Loin $19.92
WC Pollack $8.42
WC Hake $7.33
WC Bluefish $14.25
WC Red Snapper Fillet $21.67
WC Striped Bass $32.83
WC Lg Dry Sea Scallops 10/20 $22.75
WC Med. Dry Sea Scallops 20/30 $23.08
WC 16/20 Florida Gulf Shrimp $21.00
WC 16/20 IQF (frozen)Gulf Shrimp $16.25
WC Maine Crab meat Fresh 8 oz $22.42 each
WC Lump Crab Meat (Korea) - 16 oz $28.38
FR Crawfish Tail Meat Frozen $15.99
WC P.E.I. Fresh Mussels - 5 # bag $19.17
- 10 # bag $35.75
WC Fresh Oysters & Clams are available by the 25 count. Prices given on request as they change often
WC = Wild Caught
FR = Farm Raised
Thank You & Have a Great Week