The Unseen Significance of Seasoning-Purging Lobsters

Keeping a lobster live and strong once fished out of its natural environment can be a challenge.  The longer the lobsters remain out of the water, the greater the stress on that shipment.  Grading adds a further stress.  The seasoning/reviving process is very important and can be illustrated with an example.

During a marathon, a jogger builds up metabolites such as lactic acid and carbon dioxide. If these continue to accumulate, it will create a state of acidosis, causing muscle cramping, soreness, and fatigue.  During aerial exposure, a similar event occurs with lobsters.  Carbon dioxide, ammonia, and lactic acid accumulate and the amount of accumulation will depend on the frequency and severity of handling, as well as the duration of aerial exposure.  If the lobster’s blood pH falls below a critical level, then it will in most cases be unable to recover after re-emersion in water.  Lobsters that have been compromised through excessive acidosis will die after 1-2 weeks of re-emersion.[1]

Seasoning lobster in clean, well-oxygenated water for at least one and preferably two days (three days for overseas shipments) allows moderate acidosis to fully recover and eliminate built up ammonia. Meanwhile, its digestive track will be purged of its faecal material.

[1] Scotian Select Fisheries, 2004