Oyster Harvest in Virginia, Up Dramatically
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia is marking its largest oyster harvest in more than 25 years.
Gov. Terry McAuliffe announced on Monday that the state's oyster harvest jumped 25 percent last year to the highest seen since 1987.
Over the past 12 years, Virginia's oyster harvest has increased from 23,000 bushels in 2001 to about 504,000 bushels last year. The harvest numbers include wild oysters and those grown in aquaculture farms.
The dockside value of the oyster harvest increased to $22.2 million last year, up from $16.2 million in 2012.
Officials say the milestone harvest is the result of state investments in replenishing oysters in Virginia.
But the Virginia Marine Resources Commission says oysters are still susceptible to disease and other environmental factors outside of its control.