WITH an unusually warm water temperature (up as much as three degrees this autumn) local farmers are seeing their oysters thriving.
It is common for Sydney rock oysters to lose condition during winter but according to local grower Paul North, this year they are holding up well.
“We can sell as many as we can harvest,” he said.
“Supply problems in other states have created a shortage and demand is strong with upward pressure on prices.”
“The other good news is that spat is catching very well and the juvenile oysters are also putting on condition. This means that our stocks for the coming years will be greater than in the past,” he added.
“We need some good news,” he said.
“The wild weather a while back played havoc with the leases and the threat of an oyster virus had us worried but the way ahead now looks clear.”
A taste test by News Of The Area found that all of Paul’s claims stacked up.
Our reporter opened a dozen and found the oysters plump and tasty.
Currently the shellfish sell for $3.50 each in local restaurants.
At this price, it seems that somebody along the line is doing very well out of them.
It’s not the humble growers.
They get around $10 a dozen for them bagged at the markets.
By Geoff WALKER