Who is Ward Oyster Company

Ward Oyster Co. is one of the largest cage oyster farms on the East Coast of the USA, distributing their oysters all over the continental United States. Ward Oyster Co. has about 20 to 30 million oysters placed in cages near the mouth of the Ware River (our nursery) and in the heart of the Mobjack Bay (our grow out location). It is headquartered in the towns of Ware Neck in Gloucester County, and the town of Foster in Mathews county, both of Virginia. The Ware River is one of four rivers which feed the Mobjack Bay, all of which flow directly to and from the salty lower Chesapeake Bay.

Ward Oyster Company - Aquaculture Oyster Farm - Gloucester Virginia

More About Ward Oyster

Ward Oyster Co. is one of few fully integrated oyster farms on the East Coast, which is totally self-sustaining. Ward Oyster Co. produces its own seed oysters from adult oysters, which it then either grows out on its own farm or sells the surplus seed to other farms up and down the East Coast. Not only does this process not put pressure on the depleted natural wild oysters stocks, but we add oysters to the general populations. From 5 to 6 thousand oysters per year Ward produces over 1 billion larvae (swimming baby oysters) and over 100 million baby seed oysters. Ward Oyster Co.'s activities not only enhance the environment we all respect and enjoy, but it also plays a role in the cleaning of the Chesapeake Bay and other waterways. Ward Oyster Co.'s methods of harvest, grading, cleaning of equipment and shipping are all done in as eco-friendly a way as is currently possible.

Aquaculture Oyster History at Ward Oyster

Due to Ward Oyster Co.'s unique grow out location in the Mobjack Bay, its oysters have a distinctive and exquisite taste it takes from its surroundings. On incoming tides, the waters of the Chesapeake Bay accelerate and run over the area where our cages are placed, creating excellent growing conditions with the pristine waters of the Mobjack Bay as their primary food source. The year-round salinity of the Mobjack Bay averages 15 to 23 parts per thousand, which gives our oysters a sweet and salty taste without being overpowering. Their taste beckons you to have another! Check out our online store.

Ward Oyster Company - Aquaculture Oyster Farm - Gloucester Virginia

Ward Oyster - Aquaculture Oysters - Gloucester Virginia

John's Vision

John's vision for the company was to pursue clam and oyster aquaculture, in addition to the wild products. As Ward Oyster Co. pursued the growing of both clams and oysters it soon became evident that the oyster aquaculture was the best fit for Ward's location on the Ware River and Mobjack Bay. Based on John's desire to do aquaculture, he formed a sister company called Mobjack Bay Seafood, Inc. This company took over all wild clam and oyster purchases as well as distribution for both companies products. Both companies, although completely separate entities, operate out of the same location in Ware Neck, VA. You can check out Mobjack Bay Seafood, Inc. at www.mobjackbayseafood.com. This spin off allowed Ward Oyster Co. to focus all of it's efforts on aquaculture and the oyster farm.

Ward Oyster Since 2003

Ward Oyster Co. has, since 2003, diverted all of it's aquaculture activities to raising only oysters. Today they are one of the largest cage aquaculture farms in Virginia, selling farm raised oysters all over the United States. Ward Oyster Co.'s plan for the future is to continue the expansion of the oyster farm by adding an oyster hatchery in 2012, enabling them to produce their own oyster seed for the oyster farm.

While continuing the expansion of the oyster farm, Ward Oyster Co. has become increasingly aware that the location of it's farm has given their oysters a unique taste. Raw half shell and cooked oysters from Ward Oyster Co. are fast becoming the first choice for many seafood distributors and restaurants locally and nationwide.

Ward Oyster Company - Aquaculture Oyster Farm - Gloucester Virginia