USDA CSREES funding has made possible two projects currently being conducted by UAS Fisheries Technology Department in cooperation with regional shellfish industry.
Oyster Superchilling research
This project is taking an innovative look at oyster processing. The goal of this research is to see if oyster shelf life can be extended significantly by quickly reducing the core temperature of oysters right after removal from the water. The hope is that doing so will put the oyster into a pseudo-hibernatory state that prolongs shelf life without harming the organoleptic properties (taste, smell, texture) of the oyster. Research is being conducted in cooperation with Eric Wyatt of Blue Starr Alaskan Oyster company and Art King of the Naukati FLUPSY.
On-bottom oyster research
This project also has to do with oyster farming. This research will be designed to adress the feasibility of using the intertidal area to grow 3-4 mm oyster spat up to a size large enough to put into suspended culture growout facility. If small spat can be raised in the intertidal area in bags, rather than having to use the more expensive FLUPSY type nursery system, this could serve dual purposes. Fisrt it will be more cost effective. Second, it will bypass the bottleneck of inadequate FLUPSY production. John Kiser will be working with UAS Ketchikan on this research.