Oysters in Japan

Superior oysters are grown around the globe, but oyster farming in Japan is estimated to date back to the 16th century, giving the country a long recognized respect as a leader in aquaculture.

While here on the North Fork, and most of the eastern US, we cultivate the Eastern Oyster (Crassostrea virginica), several different oyster species are grown in Japan. Hiroshima Bay, the largest producer of oysters in Japan, currently cultivates Pacific oysters, Crassostrea gigas, and Crassostrea Nippona, a species native to Hiroshima Bay.

Using historical cultivation methods to shape today’s growing style, Japan’s oyster farmers evolved a method of hanging oysters in the sea from rafts.


– photo courtesy of Japan Times

This developed from an early cultivation method that attached bundles containing bamboo or twigs to branches which were then inserted into tidal flats. The oyster “babies” (larvae) would attach themselves to the branches and grow until harvest at 2-3 years of age.

From this style of growing, raised shelves were built that would hold suspended oysters over tidal flats.


-photo courtesy of seakayaking.com

Farming moved further offshore due to the reclamation of many of the tidal flats used for oyster growing, which led to today’s growing style.


In addition to its oyster farming legacy, Hiroshima is also home to many leading sake-makers. We will be featuring a sake & oyster pairing at our shop in Greenport on January 30th. Register here, or read this to learn more about sake.


16 thoughts

  1. I am looking for bulk saltwater akoya oysters with pearls inside could you please get back to me. Also if you have them could you include the price for them please. Thank you! Tina

  2. I am looking for a whole sale akoya pearl oyster distributor Do you sell akoya with pearls. If you don’t can you give me s name of a whole seller that does. Thank you

  3. Do you sell bulk oysters with pearls in them? I’m needing a supplier that I can order oysters from that have different color pearls in them by the hundreds.

  4. I am looking for a oyster farm in Japan that sells akoya oysters with pearls inside with all different colors that I can buy by the bulk…can you please give me names and prices please.

  5. looking to purchase cultured akoya oysters individually packaged. im in australia any information on a farmer i could purchase direct from would be amazing

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