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A year ago, things seemed bad for New Jersey’s oyster growers — restaurants shut down during the pandemic, hampering the oyster market, and sending farmers into a tailspin. But now, sales are back and better than ever. Scott Lennox, a founder of the Barnegat Oyster Collective, told the New York Times: “It’s going to be a bonkers year.”
Why This Matters: The oyster market has bounced back because of two major conservation methods and some shrewd business decisions. Many growers, lacking demand from restaurants, pivoted to other sources of revenue beginning to home-deliver their oysters and selling them at farmers markets.
The World Is Their Oyster: The pandemic’s chokehold on indoor dining damaged the aquaculture industry across the nation. But this situation may have had some silver linings, and has made the oyster industry more resilient than ever. The Barnegat Oyster Collective, for instance, started a mail-order oyster program during the pandemic that now ships to 48 states and accounts for 20 percent of its sales.
Moreover, the oyster buyback programs implemented during the pandemic may become permanent fixtures of the industry. The New York Times reported: “In a recent survey, farmers said they hoped to continue to donate or sell a portion of their largest, least desirable oysters as a way to pay it forward environmentally — and, possibly, to lock in a tax write-off.”
Zack Greenberg told the Times: “We’re trying out this new sort of novel approach to restoration. But it really was about supporting oyster farmers.”
by Natasha Lasky, ODP Staff Writer According to a new report from the American Farm Bureau Federation, the derecho and drought that hit Iowa last year destroyed $802 million in corn, soybeans and pastures. While crop insurance covered nearly $560 million of the losses, farmers had to pay another $243 million out of pocket. According […]
by Brent Loken, Global Lead Food Scientist, World Wildlife Fund There are few things more confusing than deciding which diet is best for people and planet. The internet is rife with hyperbolic headlines, oversimplified solutions, and heavily promoted remedies, all of which stoke division and squash good old common sense. Yes, eating in a healthy […]
by Amy Lupica, ODP Staff Writer The COVID-19 pandemic has shined a light on BIPOC communities’ systemic lack of access to healthcare and the role that environmental injustice plays in health outcomes. Now, it’s shining a light on food insecurity in some of North America’s most remote regions. Canadian non-profit Mikinakoos Children’s Fund found that the cost of getting […]
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