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Alaskan Oysters

Alaskan Oysters


The island is known as Prince of Wales, but it may as well be called King of Oysters.

By Jeremy Shackleton

Baby seal pups are cute and baby bear cubs are adorable, but what about baby oysters?

Discover — or, more appropriately, taste — for yourself! The oyster nursery in Naukati Bay, also known as the Oyster Capital of Alaska, on Prince of Wales Island is open for tours. Prince of Wales Island is the third-largest island in the United States and located just three hours by ferry from Ketchikan.

The oysters coming out of this region are famous for their taste and texture. Since the waters are a bit colder and full of nutrients, oysterfarming conditions are fantastic. Oysters produced in this area have the firmer consistency oyster connoisseurs love. Consumer-demand exceeds supply on an annual basis.

Baby oysters are technically called spat. The process used to raise spat on Prince of Wales Island is known in the oyster industry as flupsy (an acronym for floating upweller system), which involves moving ocean water across oysters contained in submersed trays. Ocean water is comprised of microscopic food suitable for the baby oysters, and the waters around the island are exceptionally nutrient-rich and contribute to very robust oyster growth rates. ….

This is an excerpt only. To read this article in its entirety, pick up the current issue of Porthole Cruise Magazine.

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