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South Carolina Sea Grant Consortium Partnership Supports Aquaculture Business Development by Increasing Oyster Seed Availability

Julie Davis prepares a batch of oyster seed to provide a budding South Carolina oyster farmer. Photo credit: Christopher Katalinas, National Sea Grant Office

South Carolina Sea Grant Consortium research and technology transfer efforts have resulted in the propagation of South Carolina based seed stock to supply the rapidly emerging oyster-farming industry in South Carolina; with a potential harvest value reaching $1,000,000 and restaurant retail value estimated at $4,000,000.

In 2016, as a result of Consortium efforts, the seed orders for all South Carolina oyster farmers were filled with seed produced in-state using South Carolina broodstock. Two growers in North Carolina were also able to procure seed from South Carolina. A total of 2.6 million seed were sold, which represents a conservative average market value to the harvester of $1,092,000.

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