The New York DEC has seized more than 1,100 pounds of undersized lobsters from a popular super market chain in three different inspections over the last four months. 

The case was sparked in March when Environment Conservation Officers ECOs found short lobsters at two Price Chopper stores in Binghamton. In May, ECOs executed random checks at Price Chopper stores across the state and found similar results.

The distribution center for Price Chopper is located in Schenectady, and there was a routine inspection done on Tuesday, measuring 297 cases of lobsters. ECOs determined that 820 lobsters were under the legal size limit.

At least 105 were seized at other stores, with a total seizure valued at more than $7,000. The law requires lobsters taken, possessed, bought, sold, imported and exported in New York measure between 3 and 3/8-inches and 5 and 1/4-inches from the eye socket to the end of the body shell.

Size restrictions have been place on lobster to protect the fishing stock. Price Chopper faces fines for violations of ECL provisions of the Fish and Wildlife Law of up to $100 for every shellfish involved. DEC will attempt to negotiate a settlement with Price Chopper in the coming weeks.

The undersized lobster were seized and donated to the Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York.