5 Ways BP's Oil Spill Will Cost You (Slide 1 of 5)

Last Updated Jul 30, 2010 2:14 PM EDT

It's now been two months since an explosion on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig triggered the worst oil spill in U.S. history. While those most directly affected by the spill are, of course, the fisherman and other workers who made their livelihood trawling the Gulf, the BP disaster will also deal a blow to the pocketbooks of many U.S. consumers and taxpayers, perhaps for years to come. CBS MoneyWatch looks at the top ways you'll be affected.

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You’ll Pay More for Seafood


Snapper on sale at a Florida fish market.|Image by Flickr User bethcanphoto, CC 3.0

Sales of Gulf Coast seafood account for 17 percent of the $3.85 billion U.S. seafood market, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. About seven percent of all shrimp, 26 percent of blue crabs, and 41 percent of oysters consumed in the U.S. come from the Gulf Coast. The federal government has closed fisheries near the spill and is closely inspecting all seafood coming from the area.

Bonnie Riggs, a restaurant industry analyst for the NPD Group, says that the big seafood restaurant chains like Red Lobster are not being hurt by the spill — and consequently not charging customers more — because they purchase from multiple sources around the world. But restaurants on the Gulf Coast and independent seafood restaurants and markets around the U.S. have started hiking prices for seafood.

In Houston, prices for wild and jumbo shrimp are up $2 a pound, while in Salt Lake City, the price of a pound of rock shrimp up to $8 from $5.25. Prices for Gulf oysters have increased from $9 to $15 a dozen at Mara’s Homemade, a popular Cajun seafood restaurant in Manhattan. Co-owner David Levi has also bumped the price of crabs up $1 apiece and says he’ll have to raise the price of shrimp dishes by 10 to 15 percent. “I think people are going to change the type of seafood they’re going to eat and what we’re going to serve,” says Levi.


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