Crawfish and crayfish are crustaceans that live in freshwater, with a great resemblance to lobsters. However, their size is smaller compared to lobsters. The two names crayfish and crawfish refer to the same group of crustaceans in two superfamilies, namely Astacoidea and Parastacoidea. Crawdad is another name for these crustaceans.
How Much Does Crawfish Cost?
The cost of crawfish is anywhere between $5 and $9, they are usually sold by the sack or per pound, depending on geographical area, season, nationwide supply, and where you are purchasing them from.
Crawfish prices vary depending on seafood demand and location. Some people may pay more than others for crawfish, but it’s hard to say how much exactly since the prices change so often due to economic factors like stock markets.
You can buy a pound of crawfish from the popular grocery store chain HEB for around $5.
Nola.com reports that boiled crawfish in the New Orleans area cost on average around $7 per pound.
The Crawfish App and the website Crawfish.com provide updated crawfish price data from over 1600 businesses, making it easier to find the best deals on crawfish. It is a great resource for finding the average price of crawfish per pound over different years and then comparing it to today’s cost. For example, in 2019, boiled crawfish were priced at $6 per pound, while in 2020 the average cost was $6.15 per pound. At the time this article was written, one pound of boiled crawfish can be bought for almost $6.85.
You can purchase online, from Amazon.com, live crawfish for a higher price of almost $17 to $25 per lb.
Factors that Affect the Crawfish Price Index per Pound
The prices are lower in coastal states like Louisiana and Texas, compared with the states that are thousands of miles away from the shore, where prices are much higher. The average price for live Louisiana crawfish sits at $3.29 per lb. while boiled crawfish will cost an average of $5.63 per lb. in March 2023.
The demand for crawfish always exceeds supply so prices tend to vary depending on who you buy from and how much meat your family requires per person. Some suppliers charge more than others but competition among all these retailers keeps the cost manageable.
Crawfish are typically a seasonal product, meaning that they’re only available for part of each year. The lowest prices for crawfish can be found during the spring and summer months. During freezing December temperatures or January, for example, live crawfish prices are high.
According to CajunCrawfish.com, the beginning of the crawfish season is determined by three factors such as whether their size is big enough to enjoy/consume, whether they are readily available, and the price is low enough.
The weather can also have a significant impact on crawfish production, particularly in terms of temperature, rainfall, drought, and hurricane season. These factors can lead to lower production levels and affect the availability and cost of crawfish.
According to the news at the time, the 2021 crawfish season in Louisiana was put into question due to hurricanes, financial hardships, and cold weather in 2020, but those in the industry remained hopeful.
Overall, the crawfish price index varies depending on the source and the time of year.
Live crawfish details
Crawfish businesses offer it in three forms: frozen, live, and boiled. The price per pound will determine what you get there are no other additions besides the crawfish itself to increase your cost. Also, you can buy crawfish by the pound or in packages.
If you’re looking for crawfish, make sure they are from a reputable source. Crawfish come in many different varieties with some being farmed and others wild-caught so it’s important that before you buy online or locally ask where those came from as well.
What are the extra costs?
If you’re looking to buy your crawfish online, be prepared for higher shipping fees. Expanded orders, like a sack of crawfish, can cost up to $35 – $55 due to their sensitivity and fragility during shipment.
It’s important to have the right ingredients for a delicious meal. You might need something as simple and common as lemon or butter, but for some recipes, you’ll want some specialty spices. People usually put crawfish in a large boiling pot with corn, onions, potatoes, and seasoning. Once they are done cooking, all of the ingredients are poured together in a pot for people to enjoy. When adding all of these ingredients, a complete crawfish boil would cost anywhere between $20 and $30.
If you do not have all the necessary tools, consider purchasing a wooden paddle, a large boiling pot, a crawfish tray, and a styrofoam cooler needed to transport it home if you buy from a local market.
Important things to consider about boiled crawfish
Don’t let your crawfish sit in cold water for long periods of time because it could kill them. If you’re boiling them, then keep the temperature between 40-50 degrees Fahrenheit by using wet towels on top of live crawfish bags.
The tail of the crawfish will curl when boiled. Though, if it is still straight even after cooking, it means they were dead beforehand. Crawfish are not good for consumption if the meat falls apart.
It is recommended to buy live crawfish. Make sure you receive it as fresh as possible. So, the supplier must deliver alive crawfish. In order to make sure that crawfish comes directly from the farm, some retailers have contracts with farmers.
There are Crawfish Identification Apps that help users identify different species of crawfish. At the same time, you can also find Crawfish Season Trackers, that inform users about the crawfish season, best times to buy, and market prices.
The average person will consume five to 10 pounds of crawfish. A pound (depending on size) contains anywhere between 15 and 20 crawdads, but most people only eat the meat, and 10 pounds of the whole crawfish contains only 1.5 pounds of meat.
Questions to ask an online supplier
- Is the crawfish available for buying during the whole year? If not, when is the best period to buy them?
- What is the minimum amount in pounds I have to order?
- Which are the grades/sizes or biggest of live crawfish your company has for sale?
- What is the freshness of the live crawfish for local delivery? How fast is the order delivered and is it possible for weekends too?
How can I save money?
The more you buy, the more you can save. Purchasing in bulk, which usually is in a sack of 40 to 50 pounds would reduce the costs.
According to Houstonia, it would be a good deal if you find boiled crawfish at the price of less than $6 per pound and live crawfish for less than $4 per pound.