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Shellfish 101

Where are the shellfish from?

  • As a consumer, you want to know that your shellfish were harvested from a certified shellfish growing area (according to the guidelines of the National Shellfish Sanitation Program (NSSP*)).
  • Always do business with a reputable chef or seafood dealer.
  • Every container of shellfish must be marked with a tag telling its place of origin, date of harvest and license number of harvester.  Don't be shy to ask your purveyor to see the tag from the lot of shellfish you want to buy.
  • As a gourmet, you will also want to know where your shellfish are from because of the amazing array of flavors that characterize each growing region.

Handling clams and oysters to maintain their quality

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.