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NC Oyster Week

Oysters are pictured during the electrolyzed water process in the CMAST Seafood Lab.

Join The NC State Center for Marine Sciences and Technology (CMAST) this week to celebrate Oyster Week in North Carolina! Last year, Governor Roy Cooper declared North Carolina Oyster Week (to be held in October each year), indicating what an important role oysters serve in the economy, culture, and ecology of our coastal communities. The proclamation states, “North Carolina has a valuable and productive coastal ecosystem and many champions who work to protect it.”

The NC State Center for Marine Sciences and Technology (CMAST) is one of those champions. Although many North Carolinians enjoy eating oysters, there is health risk associated with consuming raw or undercooked oysters. CMAST Seafood Lab scientists are conducting research using electrolyzed water to reduce Vibrio bacteria in oysters, which can cause seafood-associated illness. There is a need to develop a process to reduce these bacteria in oysters, adding value to them by extending their shelf life. This could help prevent bacteria-related illnesses. Oyster consumers, oyster farmers, harvesters, and processors would all benefit from the results of this post-harvest processing study.