Why Is Crab So Expensive – 9 Main Reasons

Why Is Crab So Expensive

A lot of seafood lovers are keen to know why crab is so expensive compared to other seafood delicacies.

Crabs are one of the most popular, expensive, and sought-after sea creatures used to prepare a wide range of seafood delicacies like sushi, crab sandwich, etc around the world.

Crabs are sold either as a whole crab, crab legs, or just the crab meat which are the factors responsible for the difference in prices of crab.

This article explores in detail the major reasons why crab is expensive, why crab meat is so rich, and why crab legs are so expensive, among other pertinent information about crab meat.

Why Is Crab So Expensive?

There’re many reasons why crab is so expensive which revolve majorly around the difficulty in catching crabs, their perishable nature, and the rise in their demand without a corresponding availability and supply, among other reasons.

Let’s now have an extensive look at the major reasons why crab is so expensive.

1. Difficulty In Catching

Catching crabs is quite a difficult and dangerous task and requires special skill to catch, unlike other sea creatures.

The pot used in harvesting crabs is relatively small hence, crab harvesters can only harvest only a few crabs at a time.

On the other hand, some states have strict regulations about how to catch a crab, and they need to be followed very closely.

Additionally, you need to pay for bait and fishing boats to go out so as to help you check on the crab pots almost every day in compliance with the regulations of the area or state.

On the other hand, seasonal tendencies such as water temperature, and changes in water tides, among other factors might also affect the overall crab population hence making it more difficult to catch crabs.

2. Perishability

Exposure to extremely warm weather conditions could cause a harvested crab to start decaying.

Hence, extra measures need to be put in place to ensure that harvested crabs are kept in their best condition before they eventually get to the grocery store and restaurants.

READ ALSO:  Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Near Me | All You Need To Know

These measures contribute to the reasons why crab is so expensive in restaurants and grocery stores.

3. Demand And Supply

Generally, the law of demand and supply maintains that an increase in demand for a particular good or service without a corresponding increase in supply leads to an increase in the price of that good or service, and crab is not an exemption.

As we’ve discussed earlier, the availability and supply of crab are relatively lower than its demand thus contributing to the reason why crab is so expensive.

4. Labour

Labor is required in almost all stages of harvesting crabs starting from the harvesting stage to the stage when it is sold to the grocery stores.

Crabs are sold either as crab legs, crab meat, or the crab as a whole, and carving out the crab legs sale requires special skill to make the best out of it.

Additionally, the crab pots used to harvest the crabs needs to be checked on a regular basis according to the regulations of the state or the area.

Ultimately, if you intend to go into full-time commercial crab farming, you just need to employ additional labor in order to make a living out of it.

When these labor costs are inculcated into the price of the crab, it eventually leads to an increase in the price of the crabs.

5. Short Harvesting Season

When there are harsh weather conditions, create an unconducive atmosphere in the habitats of crabs thus making it very difficult for them to dwell and flourish hence resulting in their scarcity.

And these unfavorable weather conditions are usually more lengthy than favorable conditions thus causing a longer period of scarcity of crabs.

During favorable seasons, crabs are harvested in bulk but thus leading to increased availability and supply and vice versa.

READ ALSO:  What Does Pounded Yam Taste Like || How To Make It

On the other hand, there’re regulations guiding the harvesting of crabs which vary depending on the area and state.

The regulations are difficult to keep up with, but they are essential to keep the crab population from being depleted.

6. Type Of Crab

There’re many types of crabs and the prices of crabs are largely dependent on the type of crab.

Among the different types of crabs, stone crabs come at a higher price than other types of crabs.

On the other hand, these different types of crab are available in large quantities at various seasons of the year.

Hence, the prices and availability of the different types of crabs fluctuate with the season thus making certain types of crabs to be cheaper than other types and vice versa.

7. Crabs Are Purchased In Pounds

Crabs are packaged in shells which contributes to their exorbitant prices.

Also sold in grocery shops according to the pounds you want to purchase.

Since the shells which the crab is being packaged with are sold together with the crabs, the weight increases thus resulting in an increase in price since the crab is sold in pounds and the main crab meat ain’t separated from the shell during purchase.

Hence, the crab shells which are sold together with the crab contribute to why crab is so expensive since the crab meat is sold in pounds.

8. Location

The prices of crabs vary depending on your location.

Crabs are harvested in coastal or riverine areas hence, the prices of crabs are cheaper in coastal areas compared to other areas.

If you live far away from coastal areas, the shipping cost of conveying the crabs to your location is added to the price of crabs which contributes to why crab is so expensive in some areas and cheaper in other areas.

READ ALSO:  How To Stop Cat From Climbing On TV/TV Stand Permanently

9. Regulation For Catching Crabs

Crab harvesting has strict regulations which vary depending on the area and state.

Some regulations come with higher prices before you can get the license while the license comes at cheaper prices in some areas.

Regulations for some crabs include their overall size.

Some regulations mandate you to only take one of their claws, then you must release them back into the water with their other claw on.

Trying to sell crabs that are below the size limit may cause you to lose your license or attract a serious fine as a penalty.

Is Crab Considered A Rich Food?

Yes. Crab is a rich food that is filled with many essential food minerals such as vitamins, and minerals and also contains low fats and Omega-3 polyunsaturated acids.

Why Is Crab Meat So Rich?

Crab meat is rich in several food minerals which makes it very nutritious and highly sought after.

Crab meat is rich in protein which is essential for building and maintaining body tissues.

Crab also contains high levels of omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin B12, and selenium.

Why Are Crab Legs So Expensive?

The most expensive crab legs are the ones gotten from the wild-caught Alaskan red king crab which is sold for $90 for one (1) pound.

The reason for the exorbitant price of the crab leg is its high demand without a corresponding supply and availability.


Crab is one of the most expensive, sought-after, and highly nutritional sea creatures used in preparing several delicacies.

The prices of crabs vary depending on several factors thus; perishability, demand, and supply, labor, regulation, and type of crab, among other factors.

This article exclusively discusses the major reasons why crab is so expensive, the food nutrients contained in crab, and other relevant information about crab and its prices.