All lobsters, all the time

More lobster blogging… because you demanded it!*

Fresh on the heels of the lobster link fest, Whole Foods CEO (and libertarian) John Mackey has announced that his stores will no longer be selling live lobsters:

Ultimately, Whole Foods management decided to immediately stop selling live lobsters and soft-shell crabs, saying they could not ensure the creatures are treated with respect and compassion.

”We place as much emphasis on the importance of humane treatment and quality of life for all animals as we do on the expectations for quality and flavor,” John Mackey, Whole Foods’ co-founder and chief executive, said in a statement.

This seems rather silly. Whole Foods will still sell the meat of cows, chickens, pigs, and other animals with nervous systems far more developed than lobsters’. Regardless of whether or not lobsters can feel pain (there is disagreement about this), even from a strict utilitarian perspective it would be hard to argue that what lobsters experience being transported and then cooked at home is worse than what other animals go through at a slaughter house.

Another of Trevor Corson’s points is worth reiterating here. Corson notes, “Live lobster is one of the last feasts still harvested in a sustainable fashion directly from nature by individuals, not corporations, and sold absolutely fresh, without processing.” That’s something I’d think Whole Foods would want to celebrate.

For more on humane lobster treatment, see the previous post.

[Via Slashfood.]

*Truthfully, no one demanded it, or showed even the slightest interest in additional lobster blogging. I’m just covering this until someone invites me spin it off into


4 thoughts on “All lobsters, all the time”

  1. So wait, let me get this straight: you’re only a few miles away from the Chesapeake and the best crabs in the entire world, and yet you’re focusing on their not-nearly-as-tasty cousin the lobster? For shame, Mr. Grier, for shame.

    You’re absolutely right on the ridiculousness of comparing getting dumped in boiling water vs. getting led into the slaughterhouse. I imagine lobsters meet their end more quickly, and with far less pain (I may be wrong on that). Either way, it seems a funny thing to concern oneself with.

  2. Ironically, I hardly ever eat lobster or crab. I’ve lived in DC for over two years now and have never had crab from the Chesapeake. You’re right, I should get on that.

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