Monday, December 22, 2014

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Austin

Local seafood market says seafood still safe to eat

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The owner of Quality Seafood in Central Austin said seafood lovers need not fret, as the local restaurant's product comes from the Texas and Florida coast and is perfectly safe to eat.

From the oil-stricken Gulf of Mexico, President Barack Obama said Monday that seafood from the region is safe, and announced a new coordinated effort to make sure it stays that way.

In remarks from Theodore, Ala., Obama said that the government will step up its inspections and monitoring to help ensure that the Gulf Coast food industry is getting the kind of protection and certification it needs to sell its products around the country.

Still, Quality Seafood owner Carol Huntsberger remains concerned over what might happen if the spill isn't contained soon.

"I would say that I'm probably more concerned about some of the effects that will happen next year, if this doesn't get stopped," Huntsberger said. "The Texas shrimpers are supposed to open up their season July 15th. There is some buzz that may be a little bit delayed, so some of the warehouses may get depleted if they can't go back out."

News on that front, however, doesn't seem to be looking up.

Scientists have provided a new estimate for the size of the Gulf oil spill that indicate it could be worse than previously thought.

A government panel of scientists said Tuesday that the oil spill is leaking between 1.47 million and 2.52 million gallons a day, an increase over previous estimates that put the maximum size of the spill at 2.2 million gallons per day.

Huntsberger said right now, oyster and shrimp prices are inching up, but Quality Seafood hasn't had to pass that cost along to the customer, just yet.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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