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Shellfish 101

How to Maintain Quality

  • All shellfish should be refrigerated or well iced by your purveyor.
  • As certified growers and wholesale dealers, we follow stringent requirements for handling and quality control under new Federal guidelines called HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point).
  • All shellfish wholesalers are required by the FDA to be HACCP certified. All dealers that are certified to ship interstate are listed on the USFDA Interstate Certified Shellfish Shippers List.
  • Once you buy shellfish, you must keep it cold but never allow it to freeze. It should be kept between 35 and 45 degrees F. Most shellfish have a shelf-life of about one week from the date of harvest.
  • We ship to our customers within 24 hours of harvest when they taste best.
  • Clams and oysters should be kept in a shallow dish in the refrigerator either uncovered or draped with a clean wet towel. Keep them away from blowers in refrigerators or coolers because that dries them out and kills them. They may lose some juice during refrigeration but they shouldn't sit in their juices. You could put them in a colander or perforated container inside another container to collect the juice or you could just decant the juices regularly.

Knowing the source

How to assess shellfish quality

*The NSSP is a consortium of federal, state and industry representatives that creates rules for the safe regulation of the shellfish industry.