‘The East Coast Shellfish Growers Association represents over 1,300 shellfish farms from Maine to Florida. These proud stewards of the marine environment produce over $150M in sustainably farmed shellfish while providing thousands of jobs in rural coastal towns. We produce local, sustainable, nutritious seafood while improving water quality and providing excellent habitat for juvenile fish and other critters. A true “win, win, win” for the economy, seafood lovers and the environment!
I live in Rhode Island where we have enjoyed 30+% annual growth in the industry for over 15 years… that means we are doubling every three years. All of the serious farmers in the state are hiring and cultured shellfish just passed the wild clam harvest as the top value seafood harvested from RI state waters. What is really amazing is we are doing this on just 206 acres and so we have lots of room for growth!
I realize that competition for ocean spaces and a lack of coordination between government agencies threatens to stall this development. Smart, proactive planning enables the emerging aquaculture industry to find in-water locations to do business, which has both economic and environmental benefits to our states and regions.’
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