Military Steps in to Buy Up Gulf Seafood

Tuesday, February 08, 2011
The U.S. military is coming to the rescue of fishermen in the Gulf of Mexico, by buying up a bounty of seafood that others have been wary of since last year’s oil spill.
Operators of 72 base commissaries along the East Coast are now promoting 10 Gulf products, including fish, shrimp, oysters and crab cakes. Although consumers have feared the region’s fish, oysters and other products were tainted by oil and chemicals used to fight the spill, testing has so far indicated that the food is safe.
Now, it’s a matter of changing the public’s perception, and in turn boosting sales of the seafood industry in Louisiana, Mississippi and other Gulf states.
The Department of Defense’s Defense Commissary Agency, which sells groceries to military personnel, reservists, retirees and their families at cost plus a 5% surcharge, is promoting seafood also to help promote first lady Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” fitness and health campaign.
The 72 commissaries involved in the effort represent less than a third of the 249 base stores located in the U.S. But officials are hoping more commissaries will join the program to assist the Gulf region.
-Noel Brinkerhoff


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