Name: Hal and Christi Wallace
Name of Business: Fresh Market Seafood
Business Address: 15849 Hwy 180 W, Gulf Shores, AL 36535
Business Phone Number: 251-967-1732
Alabama Gulf Seafood that your business processes: Shrimp, Crab
Where were you born and raised?
Gulf Shores, AL.
How did you come to work in Alabama’s seafood industry?
I was born into the industry. My dad owned a Gulf shrimp boat, and I started working at age 10 on the boats. I have shrimped for 36 years and I have three locations and five full-time boats.
What types of seafood do you process/handle?
Shrimp, crabs, squid, live shrimp for fishing.
What does your typical workday involve?
Right now a typical day is going out on the boat around 4pm and working all night. We get in around 7am and then we head and sort shrimp into various sizes to sell in the stores.
What is the most unusual thing that’s ever happened to you on the job?
Well I would have to say the worst thing that ever happened to me was after a hurricane one year, I was shrimping in little lagoon and I caught what I thought was a little girl in the net, but it turned out that it was one of those three-foot dolls. My whole body went numb when I saw it and I could not quit shaking for the fear of what I saw. You never know what you will see. We also caught a Volkswagen one time.
What is something about Alabama’s seafood industry that everyone should know?
That Mother Nature controls what we catch on a daily basis, and shrimpin’ ain’t easy.
What’s your favorite seafood dish to serve up for yourself and your family?
We love baked stuffed flounder and shrimp kabobs.
If you won a million dollars, what would you do with it?
Build a house for cancer patients to come for free and enjoy time at the beach and get to experience shrimping.
If you didn’t work in the Alabama seafood industry, what line of work would you pursue?
I would be a foreman on a job site.
What makes Alabama Gulf Seafood special?
The history of how the shrimp go from the water to your table. Every shrimp is touched at least three times before it makes it to you. Catching on deck, then heading sorting, and then the employees picking them up and giving them to you.