Ordering lobster from Maine
How To Buy Maine Lobster Wholesale For A Restaurant Or Party
By Ian Reardon
The first step is finding a distributor. The Maine lobster industry is regulated by the state and remains for the most part family owned and operated. This is a good thing! While most large corporate distributors wouldnt waste their time dealing with a small order, a family run lobster pound will most likely bend over backwards to obtain your business.
You can easily find a good lobster distributor using a search engine such as Yahoo or Google. I would use keywords such as wholesale lobster or wholesale live lobster. This will return a myriad of results, some better than others. Look for a lobster distributor who welcomes small orders. Many places will have a page devoted to wholesale inquires. Just submit an email and leave your name and number, along with how much lobster you want to order. Someone should return you email and give you price quote.
When you get the price quote, make sure it is broken down by pounds of lobster and shipping cost. Shipping can be rather expensive, so dont be shocked if it is several hundred dollars.
Most distributors give two options for shipping. FedEx/UPS or Air Freight. FedEx/UPS is great because it is delivered right to your front door even on the weekend. This convenience comes at a cost, shipping 100 pounds overnight through FedEx will cost you over 200 dollars. FedEx should be used when your total weight is low, or you are unable to use air freight.
The second option, Air Freight, is much less expensive, but also less convenient. The lobster distributor will pack up your lobster and drive them to a local airport. The lobsters will be placed on an airplane and flown to an airport close to you. Most often you will be required to pick up the lobsters at the airport. Air freight will cost you between 50 and 75 cents per pound. So to ship 100 pounds may only cost 50-75 dollars, much less then if you used FedEx or UPS.
Your lobsters will arrive in a large box packed with ice packs and special pads to old in ocean water. Lobster should be placed in refrigeration with the box open to the air. You should plan to have your lobster delivered on the day you wish to serve them.