What is Oyster (Crassostrea gigas)?

Oyster Oyster

Common names for Oyster

Pacific oyster, Japanese oyster

Other languages for Oyster

  • French name: Huître creuse du Pacifique
  • Italian name: Ostrica
  • German name: Pazifische Auster

Introduction to Oyster

Unlike the indigenous Eastern oyster, the Pacific oyster is a Japanese import, introduced to our nation just after the turn of the century to resurrect the West Coast oyster business after the collapse of the native Olympia variety (Ostrea lurida). Due to its hardiness and ease of propagation, the Pacific oyster has become the world’s most commonly cultivated oyster. From California to Alaska, as well as in Australia, Europe, and Asia, it is cultivated. North American production is led by Washington state, followed by British Columbia, California, Oregon, and Alaska. Pacific oysters are found in the wild from Alaska to California and in temperate seas worldwide. However, they are almost usually a farm-raised crop produced in suspended systems like as bags, racks, lanterns, or on ropes. They are called for the area in where they grow, such as Westcott Bays, Quilcenes, and Willapa Bays. The deep-cupped, smaller Kumamoto is the Pacific oyster that Northwest slurpers hold in the greatest regard. Northwest oyster growers also make sterile Pacific oysters known as triploids that are available year-round. Due to the fact that they do not reproduce, they are in season all year.

Product profile for Oyster

Oysters from the Pacific Northwest are mild and sweet, with a saline taste and a crisp texture. Californians have a somewhat more intense flavor. The flavor of oysters, like all other species, is determined by the waterways in which they are produced. The curling, thick, silvery gray to gold shell is deeply cupped and elongated. Meat is creamy white, with a black fringe around the mantle on occasion. The color of the shell and flesh varies according on the area and season. The meat of the oyster should be plump and moist. Meat discoloration that is bright pink, green, or black may indicate poor quality, while subtle hues of pink, green, or black may reflect diet and geographical circumstances. How can you tell whether an oyster is still alive? To test if the shell shuts, simply tap it. Alternatively, a dead oyster has a sulfurous odor.

Cooking tips for Oyster

Pacific oysters on the halfshell are popular among connoisseurs. 1/4 cup soy sauce, 4 teaspoons apple cider vinegar (or 2 teaspoons white vinegar), 2 teaspoons Japanese hot red pepper, 1 teaspoon toasted white sesame seeds, 2 teaspoons sugar, and 1 finely chopped green onion make a unique dipping sauce. Grill entire oysters until the shell opens; they’re done when the shell opens. Cook until the flesh plumps or the mantle curls, whatever way you use.

Nutrition facts for Oyster

Calories: 81 Fat Calories: 20.7 Total Fat: 2.3 g Saturated Fat: 0.5 g Cholesterol: 50 mg Sodium: 106 mg Protein: 9.5 g Omega 3: 0.7 g

Primary product forms for Oyster

Live: Singles or clusters (“clumps”) Fresh: Halfshell, Shucked meats Frozen: Whole, Halfshell, Shucked meats Value-added: Canned meats (soups and stews), Smoked meats, Breaded (frozen), Entrées (frozen)

Global supply for Oyster

Australia, Canada, Chile, France, Greece, Italy, Japan, Korea, New Zealand, Spain, United States, UK, Iran