Customers might have to shell out for scallops in 2020

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FILE- In this Dec. 17, 2011, file photo, a scallop is shucked at sea off the coast of Harpswell, Maine. The American scallop fishing industry has been experiencing strong years recently thanks to high demand from consumers and heavy catches from the fleet. (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty, File)

AP – Federal regulators say the good times of large shellfish hauls for the scallop fishing industry are likely to continue into next year.

They also say prices could rise for consumers. U.S. scallops were worth about $533 million to fishermen at the docks in 2018.

It was their third most profitable year in recorded history. As a result of new rules, the New England Fishery Management Council predicts the 2020-21 fishing season will yield about 52 million pounds of scallops.

The management council credited conservative management measures, such as closing some fishing grounds to let scallops grow, for keeping the industry healthy. 

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