Welcome to The Florida Oyster Trading Co.
Stationed on the deep blue waters of Pensacola Bay, The Florida Oyster Trading Company is a ‘for the industry, by the industry’ resource provider for local oyster aquaculture farms. Working in collaboration with the Florida Sea Grant IFAS extension, they plan to equip local oyster farms with fresh seed, wet storage, and processing infrastructure. Josh Neese, founder and aquaculture veteran, started the business to generate a larger industry-wide impact, and recognized that the most prevalent need of Gulf Coast oyster farmers is access to local seed.
Oysters are not simply a commodity, for many Americans they are a symbol of a way of life. Sadly over the past decade, natural oyster reefs and subsequent wild harvests have dramatically declined to a fraction of historic levels. This trend has necessitated the need for an alternative source – aquaculture, or farming of the seas. Aquaculture is not only a sustainable method of producing protein for a growing global population but also relieves harvest pressure on the wild populations. In some cases, such as oysters, the extensive process provides ecological benefits that improve the quality of entire ecosystems.