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Bad News Crab Fans: The Commercial Dungeness Season Will End Early on April 15

Plus, a new restaurant is set to open in Japan Center Mall, and more Bay Area food intel

Dungeness crabs sitting on a dock Shutterstock
Dianne de Guzman is a deputy editor at Eater SF writing about Bay Area restaurant and bar trends, upcoming openings, and pop-ups.

After a rough start to the Dungeness crab season that saw multiple delays to the start of the commercial crabbing season, officials are now ordering an early close to the season in just two weeks, the Mercury News reports. To lower the risk of humpback whales getting entangled in fishing gear, the California Fish and Wildlife Department announced Thursday that the commercial crab fishing season will end at noon on Saturday, April 15. Already, CFWD noted in its announcement that the move to limit crabbing is in response to “several entanglements that occurred during March and April of 2022.”

All fishing zones from the Sonoma/Mendocino county line and down the California coast to the Mexico border are affected, although Mendocino, Humboldt, and Del Norte counties will be allowed to continue fishing until further notice. Recreational fishing with crab traps can continue north of Point Arguello in Santa Barbara County, officials stated in the announcement, but may also be restricted as humpback whales return to forage during the spring and summer.

New restaurant to open at the Japan Center Mall

EK Food Services, Inc., the restaurant group behind popular restaurants Marufuku Ramen, Shabuway, Udon Mugizo, and more, is set to open yet another restaurant in San Francisco, its 15th in the Bay Area, San Francisco Business Times reports. The new project will be located in the Japan Center Mall, but which restaurant will make it into the new space remains to be seen.

Another day, another round of layoffs

Anyone keeping tabs on commercial food companies knows it’s been dismal lately, and now another Bay Area business is also announcing layoffs. Nutiva, known for its line of coconut oils and hemp seed oil among other products, is laying off 63 workers and shutting down its Richmond facility, according to a WARN notice sent to California’s Employment Development Department, the Mercury News reports. Layoffs are expected to happen in waves, starting on June 1, with warehouse employees being laid off a month later on July 1 when the warehouse is expected to close.

Oakland’s restaurant and bar owners say crime feels more frequent

Break-ins and vandalizations are creating headaches for business owners in Oakland, who tell the San Francisco Chronicle that these sorts of crimes seem to be happening more frequently at their businesses. Oakland bar Low Bar reports having been burglarized as many as five times in five weeks, and Oakland police announced plans to address the recent spike in commercial burglaries, per the paper. Meanwhile, Awaken Cafe & Roasting, an Oakland coffee shop, tells the Chronicle its insurer dropped the business after 15 years; since 2020, the business has been vandalized once, burglarized twice, and a victim of theft when someone stole the catalytic converter out of the owner’s van.