Mar 15, 2023
Do-Not-Eat Listing Draws Lawsuit From The Maine Lobster Industry Transcript
Industry groups including Maine Lobstermen’s Association are suing the Monterey Bay Aquarium in California for defamation. Read the transcript here.
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Speaker 1 (00:02):
There is a new lawsuit boiling over in Maine’s lobster industry.
Speaker 2 (00:06):
The Main Lobstermen’s Association and other lobster groups say they’re suing the Monterey Bay Aquarium for defamation over its red listing, telling people to not buy Maine Lobster.
Speaker 1 (00:15):
News Center Maine’s Jack Molmud explains.
Jack Molmud (00:22):
It’s the time of year for a Maine lobsterman to take inventory and prepare for a new season, or even your first season as the captain of your own boat.
Rob Carbajal (00:32):
I plan on launching it on April 1st.
Jack Molmud (00:35):
This is soon to be Captain Rob Carbajal of York talking to us today. This footage is from two months ago.
Rob Carbajal (00:42):
It’s nice to see that we’re fighting back. I really hope this does something for us to shape public opinion.
Jack Molmud (00:47):
He’s talking about a new chapter in the drama, taking over the lobster industry over regulations, lawsuits, and restrictions. The new battle beginning against the Monterey Bay Aquarium. The Maine Lobstermen’s Association and other lobster groups are announcing, they’re suing the aquarium for defamation from when the aquarium placed the industry on its infamous Do Not Eat List.
Kevin Lipson (01:08):
We offered Monterey Bay Aquarium two opportunities to rescind the red listing.
Jack Molmud (01:13):
That’s Kevin Lipson, the attorney for the MLA and lobster groups, telling us they gave the aquarium cease and desist letters back in December.
Kevin Lipson (01:21):
They indicated that they were looking at all available scientific data.
Jack Molmud (01:25):
So while that new battle begins over on the West Coast, there is an old battle yet to be decided here on the East Coast, and that is an appeal brought on by the Maine Lobstermen’s Association from last year. It would bring everybody back to the drawing board and may actually reverse that Monterey Bay Aquarium’s red listing decision. So why is the MLA targeting the aquarium now in a separate lawsuit?
Kevin Lipson (01:45):
Efforts like Seafood Watch that affect consumer choices will be of increasing importance while these regulatory issues are percolating through the system.
Jack Molmud (01:57):
Meantime, the aquarium told News Center Maine in a statement, “The lawsuit is meritless and a violation of the organization’s First Amendment rights.” They said nobody was around for an interview. So if the Maine Lobstermen’s Association is successful in its lawsuit against the Monterey Bay Aquarium, then Maine lobster would be taken off that red listing and companies such as Whole Foods who last year said that they would drop Maine Lobster because of the red listing said that they would start selling them again. In Portland, Jack Molmud, News Center, Maine.