AP reports on green crab taste test results

The Associated Press reported two University of Maine food scientists and a former graduate student believe they may have found a solution to the state’s trouble with invasive green crabs. The crustaceans threaten Maine’s marine economy because they’re predators of softshell clams, which are one of the state’s signature seafood items, the AP reported. Fishermen and state fishery managers have struggled to find ways to make the crabs worth catching to help control population. Now, Beth Calder and Denise Skonberg and former graduate student Joseph Galetti say they’ve created a food product that could be viable: green crab empanadas. The scientists published findings that about two-thirds of taste testers would “probably” or “definitely” buy the product if it was locally available, according to the article. Skonberg said one of the reasons it’s important to find a commercial use for the crabs is their resilience. “They are hard to kill, and with the reproductive rate and the water warming, they are doing incredibly well,” she said. “If we don’t have any use for them at all, it’s hard.” The Washington Post, Albany Times Union, San Francisco Chronicle, Portland Press Herald and Maine Public carried the AP report. Mainebiz, The New Food Economy, Hakai Magazine and Food & Wine also published an article on the topic.