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      Local shrimp prices soar

      You can expect to pay more if you're buying shrimp in our area.

      One business owner told WPDE NewsChannel 15 that his retail price for local, jumbo shrimp has gone up.

      "The jumbo, white ro e shrimp that we are selling now were two dollars a pound higher than we were this time last year," said Rick Baumann, who is the owner of Murrells Inlet Seafood.

      Shrimpers have had smaller- sized catches because of this year's colder temperatures, according to Baumann.

      "The cold winter that we had this last year also has had an impact on the white shrimp because when the water gets cold, we lose a lot of the white shrimp," Baumann said.

      Baumann said the rising price of shrimp is good for the shrimpers who have been struggling in recent years between escalating diesel fuel costs and higher boat operating costs.

      However, he is concerned about how often his customers will come back when shrimp prices are so high.

      Some customers said they won't be able to purchase shrimp as frequently as they would like if prices stay high.

      "I'm thinking it's going to be hard for me to be able to purchase something in here, especially on a weekly basis," said Judd Thweatt.

      White shrimp production will continue for another week, then they will be harvested again next fall.

      Baumann said he has seen spring shrimping seasons with smaller catches followed by a fall with a bigger harvest. He is optimistic that will hold true this season.