Oyster Shell Recycling for the future
Coastal Caterers works with the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources to recycle oyster shells from our oyster roasts. The shells can then be planted back into the salt marsh. A single oyster can filter 8 to 10 gallons of water a day. Also, recycling oysters shells helps to provide a habitat for new oysters to grow. Oyster reefs created by replanting oyster shells help to prevent erosion and create new habits for small fish and crabs, which provides foraging opportunities for larger game fish.
After an oyster roast, shells can be drop off at one of the many shell recycling locations provided by the SCDNR. Once the oyster shell is recycled they are taken to be bleached out by the sun. This natural bleaching process usually takes a couple of months. Bleaching ensures that no harmful bacteria are on the oyster shells before being put back in the water. Volunteers with the SCDNR bag shells and help place them back in the creeks and rivers of South Carolina. Oyster reef-building takes place at many different locations along the coast.
The oyster reef restoration program is important in ensuring future oyster growth, provide clean water, create habitat for marine life, and help prevent erosion too. We are happy to be a part of these efforts and look forward to many years of roasting oysters, recycling oyster shells and working with the SCDNR’s SCORE program for the future!