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Supply chain issues could create spike in U.S. seafood prices

The worldwide COVID pandemic has created a labor shortage here in the United States, and extra storage charges are eating up profits for suppliers.

BUFFALO, N.Y. — If you love your Lenten fish fry, or any kind of seafood, get ready to pay more for it in the coming weeks and months.

The majority of seafood we eat comes from outside the country, and it is shipped to the United States on large container ships.

The worldwide COVID pandemic has created a labor shortage here in the United States, so large amounts of seafood are sitting, either off shore on ships or in warehouses, where the extra storage charges are eating up profits for suppliers.

"So again, it's that whole chain reaction, Refrigerated and frozen, because of the higher cost of storing and handling those products, they are inherently more expensive, and the longer they sit somewhere, the higher the cost goes," according to Jack Ampuja, Executive Director of the Center for Supply Chain Excellence at Niagara University.

Ampuja says some seafood suppliers are estimating between 20 and 30 percent increases for some products, and those shortages and increases could continue well into the fall.