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Maine Lawmakers Put Off Decision on Baby Eel Lottery System

AUGUSTA, Maine - Maine lawmakers put off a vote on a proposal to create a lottery system for permits to fish for baby eels, which are used in the global sushi market.
The Marine Resources Committee is considering creating such a system to replace fishermen who leave the elver fishery. The committee decided to table its vote on the issue on Wednesday.
The proposal appears to have the support of state leaders and members of the industry.
The fishery is currently closed to new people. Fishermen say many industry members are older, and there needs to be a system in place to get new people into the business.
The baby eels often sell for more than $2,000 per pound at docks. Asian aquaculture companies buy them so they can be used as food.