EAT FARMED OYSTERS
Our farming methods give much needed help back
to the Chesapeake Bay environment. In the past,
there were enough oysters to filter all 19 trillion
gallons of water in the Bay every few days. One
oyster can filter about 50 gallons of water per day,
so it takes at least 380 billion oysters to accomplish
all that filtration. Due to over-harvesting and
disease, much of the natural oyster population in
the Chesapeake Bay has been destroyed. Without
this filtration there is more algae and sediment
which leads to less sunlight in the water, a key
ingredient to a healthy Bay. Oysters are just one link in the chain.
Less sunlight equals less grass beds
which means less habitat for young crabs and fish. Now that the natural
oyster population has dramatically
decreased, what’s filtering the water?
Our 10 million-plus oysters are filtering approximately 525 million gallons
of water daily during the
growing season. We aren’t growing 380 billion oysters yet, but as we
help other independent growers
establish thriving farms, we expect to see the number of oysters in the
Bay rise exponentially.
Farmed oysters take the harvesting pressure off the natural populations
so they can reproduce and
replenish old oyster beds. Of our 10 million oysters, many are planted
on oyster grounds for reef
restoration and reproduction in the wild. Each female oyster, depending
on size, has the capability of
spawning 25-85 million offspring. Of course, not all of those oysters
make it to maturity. But if only
2% of the offspring survive to maturity from the 2% that actually set,
that’s potentially over 500 million
young disease resistant oysters we release into the wild annually.
When consumers support the farmed Bay oyster by purchasing them
directly or requesting them in
restaurants, they are supporting the restoration of the Chesapeake Bay.
What are you waiting for?