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Whale Safety Concerns Might Delay the Commercial Crab Season

Thanksgiving crab feasts might be in peril

California’s Dungeness Crab Seasons Starts Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

The recreational fishing season for Dungeness crab kicked off on Saturday in California, and the Chron reports that licenses are available for sport fishers who want to head out on Bay Area waters is search of the beasts. However, worries over domoic acid (a neurotoxin produced by algae that can cause symptoms ranging from nausea to disorientation to death) mean that the California Department of Public Health says that people who catch area crabs should remove all of the crab’s internal organs before cooking, and dump any water they’re cooked in after.

Though restaurants are expecting commercial crab season to begin on November 15, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife has tentatively pushed that to November 23, Bay City News reports. That’s because the Nov 15 date poses “a significant risk of whale entanglements,” the CDFW says. It also means the launch of the commercial season is might be pushed back dangerously close to Thanksgiving, for Bay Area home cooks hoping to keep their Thanksgiving crab tradition. The agency is expected to make a final decision on any possible delay in coming days.

In other late-breaking news

  • Saturday Night Live cast members corpsed shamelessly during a sketch that took on Impossible Foods.

This isn’t the first time that “Smokery Meats’” Wylene and Vaneta Starkie (Aidy Bryant and Kate McKinnon) visited the Weekend Update portion of Saturday Night Live with platters full of presumably ripe-smelling meat. In a sketch from March, the duo introduced their business, which only slaughters “bad animals.” In this past weekend’s iteration, the Bryant and McKinnon again lost their composure, but this time it was as they complained about the competition provided them by Redwood City-based Impossible Foods. “This computer beef that bleeds like the real thing is killing us, “ Bryant says.

  • Acme Bread Company is breaking up with Kermit Lynch.

The classic Bay Area bakery has been headquartered at the corner of Cedar Street and San Pablo Avenue in Berkeley since 1983, shacked up with landlord Kermit Lynch Wine Merchant. That’s over as of 2023, KQED reports, after, says Lynch, the site started to see “too much traffic, both for the parking lots and for the foot traffic.” Acme founders Steve and Suzie Sullivan found a new spot in the former Berkeley Army Surplus store (1640 San Pablo Avenue), and after zoning and permitting negotiations (as well as major renovations) they expect to open in their new spot in three years’ time.

  • Vintner Agustin Huneeus was scheduled to begin his prison sentence today

Bay Area vintner Agustin Huneeus Jr. — of family-owned Napa Valley winery Quintessa — was expected to report to federal prison today to serve a five-month sentence for his role in the college admissions scandal. CNN reported in May that Huneeus admitted to paying $50,000 as part of a scheme to manipulate his daughter’s SAT scores, then $250,000 more to arrange her admission into USC as a purported recruit for the school’s water polo team. In addition to his prison sentence, Huneeus will pay a $100,000 fine and spend 500 hours toiling in community service, KSRO reports.

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