BATON ROUGE, La. (press release) – Lieutenant Governor Billy Nungesser and the Louisiana Seafood Promotion and Marketing Board today announced a donation of 2,400 pounds of Louisiana shrimp to the Second Harvest Food Bank. The donation was made by the Louisiana Shrimp Association through Ronnie “Chevo” Anderson and Bluewater Shrimp Company, owned by David and Kim Chauvin, to help families in need during the COVID-19 pandemic. Some of the shrimp is softshell shrimp, while the rest in regular head-on shrimp. Second Harvest Food Bank will divide the shrimp to offer families a few pounds each.
“I’ve always told people outside Louisiana that when they are here, we will treat them like family. This donation is an example of how we in Louisiana treat each other like family with leaders in the Louisiana shrimp industry stepping up to help in this time of need,” said Lieutenant Governor Billy Nungesser.
“People can spread the virus by talking and breathing. There is no better way to use our Louisiana seafood at this time than to give it to families in need,” said Acy Cooper, Jr., president of the Louisiana Shrimp Association.
“We see the needs of families across the state to pay rent and other obligations. Many are out of work,” said Kim Chauvin, co-owner of Bluewater Shrimp Company. “Our friend, Ronnie “Chevo” Anderson, had an idea of donating Louisiana shrimp to help our fellow Louisianans in this time of need. Our pastor was able to put us in touch with Second Harvest to bring this idea to reality, and help our neighbors throughout Louisiana.”
Second Harvest Food Bank leads the fight against hunger in South Louisiana by providing food access, advocacy, education, and disaster response. Second Harvest provides food and support to 700+ community partners and programs across 23 parishes. Staff and volunteers of the food bank distribute the equivalent of more than 32 million meals to 210,000+ people a year.
Lt. Governor Nungesser will encourage the Louisiana state government to follow this lead and purchase all inventories of Louisiana shrimp to send to the Second Harvest Food Bank. This follows Lt. Governor Nungesser’s request to the Louisiana Congressional delegation last week to include Louisiana Gulf Coast seafood products on a list of approved additional food purchases for the USDA.
“Purchasing our seafood for this USDA program, is one way to help save our seafood industry, which is so important to our state. Our processors will open up their doors once again, and our docks will be buzzing with boats full of fresh seafood,” said Lt. Governor Nungesser. “The seafood industry is one of the hardest working and most enduring industries in our state’s and country’s history. Please allow them the chance to return to work successfully by granting them the opportunity to supply their products as an eligible purchase with the USDA.”
Louisiana produces $2.4 billion annually in seafood and one in every 70 jobs in Louisiana is related to the seafood industry. Louisiana has had a thriving commercial seafood industry since the 1800s, in which catching and selling of crabs, shrimp, oysters, saltwater finfish, alligator, and crawfish have provided the livelihood for many families and communities. As the nation’s second-largest seafood supplier, Louisiana provides an incredible array for superior-quality seafood to restaurants and homes across the country.