Virginia's oyster harvest topped the half-million bushel mark in 2014


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RICHMOND, Virginia — Virginia's oyster harvest increased by 25 percent last year, boosted by wild as well as farm-grown oysters.

The Virginia Farm Bureau said the harvest topped the 500,000 bushel mark and had a dockside value of $22.2 million.

Mike Hutt of the Virginia Marine Products Board said the state has about 200 licensed growers. He says that's a plus for the industry as well as the Chesapeake Bay because oysters filter bay waters.

Hutt said the 2014 oyster harvest is the largest since 1987.

The Chesapeake Bay's oyster stocks are still a fraction of historic highs.

Oyster season is open until May.

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