The annual Virginia cultured shellfish assessment is available online in which a slight decline of 11% in 2015 oyster sales and a 25% reduction in clam harvests are reported, probably tied to the unusually brutal winter conditions last year. Even with these declines, Virginia remains the East Coast leader in cultured shellfish with well over $48.3M in sales. The survey conducted by the Virginia Institute of Marine Sciences (VIMS) shows hard clam sales of $32.3 million and $16 million in oyster sales. The values are according to the 10th annual Virginia Shellfish Aquaculture Situation and Outlook Report. The survey and report provide an annual assessment of trends and projections for Virginia’s shellfish aquaculture industry. The 2015 results are drawn from 79 completed surveys returned to VIMS. Respondents included 15 clam growers, 66 intensive oyster growers, 7 extensive oyster growers, 5 shellfish hatcheries, and 9 growers who cultured both mollusks.

Highlights of the 2015 Virginia report include: