June 4th, 2010
04:15 PM ET

Oil disaster takes toll on seafood mainstay in Philly

Snockey's Oyster & Crab House has been serving seafood to Philly residents for nearly a century. The first restaurant opened in 1912, just a few weeks after the sinking of the Titanic.  

CNN's All Platform Journalist Sarah Hoye talked to Ken Snockey, the restaurant's third generation owner, about the impact of the Gulf oil disaster on his business:

CNN: How has the Gulf oil disaster affected your business, so far?

KEN SNOCKEY, OWNER: We have definitely seen seafood prices go up. We're a 98-year-old oyster house. However, very rarely do we buy our oysters from the Gulf, we are more cold water oriented, and buy from the Chesapeake Bay and north. Shrimp come from the Gulf, and I'd say we've seen about a 25 percent jump in price. Crab meat comes from the Gulf.

CNN:  Since you are able to get seafood from other areas in the northeast, do you think you'll be able to avoid a bigger impact?

SNOCKEY: It's going to ripple, and we're well aware of that. I think it will affect everything that comes from the Gulf. It's a big world, but it's a small world now.

CNN:  Your family has been in the seafood restaurant business for the past century: do you know of any other disaster that compares to this?

SNOCKEY: I cannot pinpoint a particular catastrophe that affected the industry like this, but the seafood market and restaurants, is more volatile than most. One week you can buy a crate of broccoli for $25 and the next week its $65 because of a frost in Chile. Luckily, it is a big world today, they [shrimp, crab] come from so many destinations than ever before.

But it's a tragedy for those people in the Gulf: how are they supposed to make a living?

soundoff (14 Responses)
  1. Willy Wonka

    Chocolate-dipped Shrimp! What a delight! 😀

    June 4, 2010 at 4:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • BreakingNewsBlog.us

      despite the optimistic claims BP has clearly FAILED again to stop the oil spill, since, 45 days after and four different methods adopted, also the "cap" used this night hasn't solved the problem, because, only 1000 barrels (or less than 5% of the 20,000 barrels spewed every day from the BP well) is now collected by the cap's top pipe, while, now, BP aims (read: "hopes") to contain "90%" of the oil leak (that STILL gushes copiously from the cap bottom and will increase very much when the four vents atop the "containment" cap will be closed) but, also assuming the leak will fall to 10-30%, it, anyway, means, that several millions more gallons will be spilled in the Gulf of Mexico and in the Atlantic ocean, until the new well will finished in mid-August (as "promised" by BP...) to divert the oil flux from the damaged well
      well, despite I'm SURE that BP still won't listen any suggestion from me or other, I've developed a further, cheap and simple idea to quickly CLOSE the wellhead and to STOP NOW up to 100% of the oil leak, and NOT only the expected/hoped "90%" using the (current) BP's "cap" system
      my new idea (shown in the image below) uses a TRUE cap (without any kind of pipe to gather the oil) to be inserted in the cutted riser on the top of the wellhead to (finally and completely) CLOSE it

      June 4, 2010 at 5:16 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Smith in Oregon

    Despite BP talking points and BP connected doctors, scientists and 'self-labeled' nutritionists, People are beginning to realize that Crude Oil contains dozens of very toxic, poisonous, carcinogenic and neuro-toxins which poisons any creature which comes into contact with them, consumes them or breathes them into their body's. Heavy crude Oil breaks down so very slowly that even after 40 years, nearly a full 50% of the original spills around the world of Crude still remain in that regions Ocean's water, seabed and actively poisoning and contaminating sealife, seafood and shell fish.

    The result? A spike in Stomach and Colon Cancer for Humans consuming contaminated seafood. A marked decrease in fish, marine and mammals in those Ocean regions where the original spill took place. Republican led commercial fishing corporations will undoubtedly hawk contaminated seafood to consumers in America and around the world and since Bush-Cheney gutted the EPA inspectors, they'll probably succeed in getting some onto the market. Undoubtedly many humans and pets that eat the resulting tidal wave of Petrol-Chemical Crude Oil contaminated seafood are going to be poisoned.

    June 4, 2010 at 6:06 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Martha Liebrum

    Dear Sarah Hoye,
    Once you are told that Snockey's Oysters & Seafood buys its oysters from the Northeast, and that it really has no connection to the Gulf Coast fish, that makes it a NON story. And yet...there it was. Nice photo, though.

    June 4, 2010 at 6:11 pm | Report abuse |
  4. dayton Kieswetter

    I have a question (unrelated to Oysters). It seems to me this oil well disaster is very unique in that it's gushing money. How large is the oil reserve in this well and how does that translate into total dollars – my guess it's BILLIONS. Maybe BP should donate all the proceeds from this well to all the folks and communities impacted. I have not seen any discussion on this matter

    Any thoughts?

    June 4, 2010 at 10:24 pm | Report abuse |
  5. techstyle

    Government involvement in private commerce is socialism, you dirty commies. Like my granddaddy and dad said "Better dead than red".
    Drill Baby Drill. Who cares about some "Beach Huggin Hippies" anyway.

    June 5, 2010 at 4:55 am | Report abuse |
  6. ruffnutt

    dont they deep fry the shrimp and stuff in oil anyways?

    June 5, 2010 at 5:01 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Craig N. Barthelmas

    Subject: PRO-ACTIVE OIL SPILL CONTINGENCY PLAN, Dated: 10 May, 2010

    TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN: Here’s a contingency plan that has patented technology and a process that really works.

    1. We found a pre-processed material and developed an action plan that would have extracted up to 95% of the oil spill contaminants from seeded surface waters of the Gulf of Mexico, before it hit land fall.
    2. Our product is a, “Modified Oil Spill Environmental Sponge” dubbed M.O.S.E.S., it is a ¼” to ½” product that can be used to absorb oil contaminants from both “fresh water and salt water” surface oil spills. Our tests have concluded that one ton of product will absorb 125 gallons of oil in less than one hour. Simply put it will absorb approximately one half of its weight in oil. M.O.S.E.S. collects/absorbs oil not water. After saturation M.O.S.E.S. will only contain about 1.4% water. It creates no added impact on marine life or the environment. It also poses no threat to other kinds of wildlife including humans. A fifteen minute test will prove this process works.
    3. Our plan is full circle and includes staging, seeding, re-claiming and re-processing all of the contaminated oil’s and seed materials back into re-usable fuels and commodities.
    4. Due to the urgencies to reduce the impact on the environment and the magnitude of this spill, our plan required partnering with the Coast Guard and other organizations that were already being used to provide staging, seeding and reclaim operations.
    5. Seeding operations were to be handled in essentially the same way they were being done, with minor and/or no modifications to airborne or aquatic equipment that would handle spreading ¼” to ½” particulates.
    6. Re-claim operations required the same booms, scoops, pumps and barge operations, that were being used.
    7. Re-processing operations proposed a permanent emissions free plant for processing oil, sand and other like materials into re-usable fuels and commodities. The plant would take approximately ninety to one hundred and fifty days to construct and would become a permanent part of a states fast action response to future oil spills.
    8. Our plan would have first, assisted with the on-going damage control operations in the gulf; second, it could have been put into operation within seven days; third, it would have become a $30,000,000.00 per year financial benefit to the communities that embraced staging and plant processing operations.
    9. This plan will greatly reduced the time and costs associated with this kind of oil spill in the future. We are confident that this type of pro-active plan would become a template for other high risk (oceanic) areas.
    So, why was this plan given no consideration at all? It is not a question of if another spill will happen, but when! The only excuses we have been able to come up with that, we are sure you are going to here are, as follows:
    a. BP, News Networks and Government Agencies didn’t have the time to consider a pro-active long term plan?
    b. We were crack pots when, this technology is patented and the product could be tested in fifteen minutes?
    c. BP has it under control as, they have done this before? Yes and, crazy is doing the same thing over and over again, expecting different results! We need to get past these smoke screens and prepare for future spills.
    Thank you for your time and consideration. We’d love to receive some constructive input from anyone who is listening.
    Craig N. Barthelmas, Verizon Cell: [313] 682-1428, E-Mail: GE1RE22@aol.com
    CC: BP., CNN, FOX NEWS, NOAA, Governors of: AL., FL., LA., MS., And TX.

    June 7, 2010 at 2:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Craig N. Barthelmas

      ATTENTION!! The PRO-ACTIVE OIL SPILL CONTINGENCY PLAN listed above will not plug oil leaks but, it will address five major problems; two of witch, are concerns that have not been addressed in the media or in the government.
      1. It truly is a LONG TERM-CONTINGENCY PLAN. It will help the community rebuild revenues while providing a fast action operational plan for future oil spills. Yes! Future oil spills will surely occur, despite future prevention efforts!
      2. This plan is full circle and would included staging, seeding, re-claiming and re-processing all of the contaminated oil’s, oil filled sands and seed materials back into re-usable fuels and commodities.
      3. It creates no added impact on marine life or the environment. It also poses no threat to humans and/or other forms of wildlife. Oil, feed stock and sand processing are near emissions free processes.
      4. It will generate $30,000,000.00 worth of new revenues for the communities that embrace staging and plant processing operations. The plant would remain in full operation after the clean-up is done.
      5. It will also add about forty new jobs to the community. This is not only a plan to help with short term clean up’s, it will also have a positive long term and lasting effect on the community as well.
      We all know that BP has been feeding us misinformation and then trying to mobilize volunteers to help minimize their cost. Yes! We sent BP and other agencies this plan. Operations of this nature have a price tag associated with them and so, it would appear that they have no wish to spend anything on spills they can’t control or that won’t go back into their pockets. The OMRS-100 technology is patented and, M.O.S.E.S. (The oil absorbent) can be tested in less than fifteen minutes!
      As always our government is seeking a short term quickie (political talk) so we can get a long term scr**ing! Has anyone mentioned where they (BP) plan to put and/or dispose of all of that contaminated; oil, sand and material? We are pretty sure that without intervention it will be in somebody’s back yard, neatly hidden from sight, killing something else. Don’t you think that any oil spill plan should at least consider: Prevention, Mobilization, Extraction and Disposal Operations?
      Thank you for your time. We would love to receive some constructive input from anyone who is as concerned as we are.
      Craig N. Barthelmas, Verizon Cell: [313] 682-1428, E-Mail: GE1RE22@aol.com

      June 7, 2010 at 2:51 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Owen Bell

    Seafoods are very rich in Iodine too.'..

    June 23, 2010 at 12:35 am | Report abuse |
  9. Katherine Campbell

    what i like about seafoods is that they are tasty and very delicious.~~`

    July 28, 2010 at 8:44 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Martha Thomson

    seafoods are great because they have lots of the mineral iodine which prevents goiter"-.

    September 27, 2010 at 1:32 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Wrinkle Treatment :

    well, who does not love seafood anyway? Seafood tastes so yummy and is addicting'."

    October 25, 2010 at 8:55 am | Report abuse |
  12. Audio Switch

    seafoods are great because they are really tasty, i think that almost all seafoods are super duper tasty ,'.

    December 22, 2010 at 3:10 pm | Report abuse |