Monday, April 1, 2019

Massachusetts Coastal Caucus of Legislators

A very engaging meeting today at the State House with the Massachusetts Coastal Caucus of Legislators. In addition to an in depth discussion on the invasive species known as green crabs, we also tasted a sample of them.

A presentation by Mary Parks, Executive Director of Green Crab R and D, included information about the marketability of green crab as a source of protein and as a flavor enhancer in other seafood items. Due to a unique amino acid profile the green crab has the potential to become a lucrative soft-shell product. In Venice, Italy, cooks have been serving them for a hundred years. Here in the US, until only recently, the crab has been more likely to be added to the compost pile.

We also learned from Peter Phippen, the coordinator for Massachusetts Bays National Estuary Program, about new research development in the Great Marsh. This marsh, the largest in New England, is comprised of 20,000-30,000 acres of saltwater marsh, mudflats, islands, sandy beaches, dunes, and rivers.

Peter has been advancing research into thin-layer application of dredged material as a way of means of minimizing negative impacts on marshes.