Maine lobster processors have a labor problem

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TENANTS HARBOR (AP) — The booming lobster processing business in Maine is struggling to find and retain good workers.

Since 2010, when a change in Maine law expanded the types of products plants can process, the number of companies that hold lobster processing licenses has more than doubled to 13.

Yet finding and retaining workers has hampered expansion.

Kyle Murdock opened Sea Hag Seafood in 2012. He told the Portland Press Herald (http://bit.ly/1w8nqUr ) it’s a challenge to find people to run the cookers, inspect meat for shells and cartilage, and do a variety of other tasks.

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One problem may be conditions. Plant floors can be cold and wet. Workers must constantly be on their feet. Schedules can be erratic —six days one week if landings boom, one day the next if bad weather disrupts landings.

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