Learn about oysters as food
The Anatomy of an Oyster
PACIFIC OYSTER, CRASSOSTREA GIGAS
A large, fast-growing, cupped oyster with a deep, elongated and often irregular shell. The thick shell varies from muddy brown to light gray. Suspended culture produces a fluted shell; intertidal, an smooth one. The oyster can grow to over 12 inches but is normally harvested at 6 inches or less. Originally from Japan it is now the most widely cultured oyster in the world. Like Atlantic oysters, names of Pacific oysters vary region to region.
Vancouver Island to California, plus Alaska, France, Korea, Japan, New Zealand, Australia and Chile. They are now the most commercially produced oyster in the world. Not only do they grow faster than any other oyster, they have the most unique flavor profile that widely varies depending on where they are grown!
The Willapa BayAt nearly half the size of San Francisco Bay, the Willapa Bay is one of the largest coastal plain estuaries on the Pacific Coast. With an incredibly low population density it is one of, if not THE Cleanest Bay in the US. The high tidal flush (almost 70% of the water in the bay is flushed with each tide) coupled with a very small watershed, it is a truly unique ecosystem and one that is perfect for oysters to thrive.
Farm-raised in two main techniques: bottom culture, using wild spawn or hatchery seed in off-bottom baskets.
Pacific oysters are available year-round. We sell all of our oysters live, in the shell. Meats normally run from extra-small (more than 144/ gal.) to large (not more than 64/gal.)
Quality ControlAll of our oysters are hand-picked, culled by hand and individually selected for sale. The rest are returned to the beach to grow.
Handling & StoringTo keep oysters alive, place them cupped shell down in an open container in the cooler (34 to 45 F.) and cover with a clean wet towel to prevent them from drying out. Do not store in a bucket of water, plastic bag or airtight container. Live oysters should tightly close when tapped. Properly refrigerated oysters will stay alive 7-10 days after harvest.
Special ConditionsPersons in high-risk health categories should not eat raw shellfish, especially oysters. Also, it is recommended shellfish be cooked thoroughly during the warm summer months, to reduce the possibility of illness from a naturally occurring bacteria, known as Vibrio parahaemolyticus. Shellfish growers in the State of Washington, are closely monitored by the Department of Health who inform growers to halt harvest and sale of shellfish if harmful conditions exist.