Thursday, November 12, 2015

Virginia Oysters Booming

Good news, if true: Virginia Oyster Harvests Continue to Soar
Virginia’s oyster harvest surged another 24 percent last year, sailing past 650,000 bushels, the most in almost three decades, Governor Terry McAuliffe announced on Tuesday.

“Virginia is the oyster capital of the East Coast,’’ said Governor McAuliffe. “We have seen yet another year of remarkable growth in our oyster industry. Our oysters are delicious, harvested sustainably, and provide good jobs for hard-working Virginia watermen. When it comes to oysters, Virginia is all in.”

Over the past 11 years, the oyster harvest in Virginia has increased from 24,000 bushels in 2003 to an estimated 659,000 bushels last year, according to preliminary harvest reports from the Virginia Marine Resources Commission (VMRC).

This is the highest level seen since 1986 and is 24 percent more than the 533,000 bushels last year and 61 percent more than the 409,000 bushels harvested in 2012.

The dockside value of the oyster harvest increased to $33.8 million last year, up from $22.2 million in 2013.
But think of how much faster the oysters would recover if they weren't harvesting 650,000 bushels per year.

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