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Succulent Pacific scallops are a BC treasure

CANADA - Scallop farming is a green industry, becasuse the shell fish require clean water to thrive and grow. No additives are added to the ocean and with all the controversy surrounding fish farming at present, I was pleased to have a positive experience talking to people at Island Scallops, writes Julius Pokomandy.

The scallops are produced in a hatchery complex and are cultured at ocean farms. Typically, the whole scallop cycle from hatchery to harvest takes 18 to 24 months..

The sprawling 30-acre property is located adjacent to the Island Highway in Qualicum Beach. Island Scallops has been involved in aquaculture research and development since 1989, shellfish processing and marketing since 1991. Today, 3,000 to 4,000 pounds of scallops are ready to be shipped each week.

The company is the largest private marine hatchery and the first fully-integrated shellfish producer in Canada. Island has been developing these unique technologies for 17 years and has worked with a number of species, including geoduck clams, mussels, abalone, and sea urchins.

Island Scallops specializes in shellfish and marine fish species new to aquaculture in BC and has pioneered scallop and sablefish culture in the region. Its main product is the Pacific scallop, which is not just any scallop.

Twenty-five years ago, the Pacific scallop did not exist. Robert Saunders, CEO of Edgewater International Inc. and R&D director of Island Scallops (a subsidiary) successful crossed the local slow-growing weathervane scallops with Japanese imports.

The successful combination produced a distinctive species that is one of the largest in the world. They can reach 15cm in length and 500g in weight. They have a superb growth rate and a proven record of disease resistance, achieving a 95% survival rate during the grow-out phase.

Source: The Tri-City News