Processing Magazine

Oyster Leaders Meet to Discuss BP Spill

April 19, 2011

The Associated Press reports that Louisiana oyster industry leaders say BP PLC has yet to honor a $15 million commitment to help oyster farmers, processors and dealers recover from last year''s oil spill. Members of a state oyster task force joined state officials in New Orleans Friday to discuss the spill, which began after the BP leased rig Deepwater Horizon exploded on April 20, 2011, killing 11 workers. They said the money was promised last fall. It would be used to restore seeding areas affected by the spill. The industry typically puts $360 million into the state economy in a given year. It''s been half this past year and will likely be about half that in the coming years until oyster beds are fully restored. It typically takes three to four years for an oyster to grow to market size. Officials said the restoration efforts would include the placing of "cultch" material on which oyster larvae grow. Some would also be used to research seeding and growing techniques that would speed growth.