The Beauty of Oyster Farming

The Beauty of Oyster Farming February 11, 2015

By Joseph Sunde

The oyster population in the Chesapeake Bay has severely dwindled, amounting to less than 1% of historic levels, according to the NOAA. In turn, from a consumer’s perspective, Virginia oysters have been increasingly replaced by other varieties from around the globe.

But if Rappahannock Oyster Co. has anything to say about it, the Bay oyster will once again reign supreme.

The company’s mission? “To put the Chesapeake Bay oyster back on the map” and give consumers a chance to once again enjoy “what is arguably the greatest tasting oyster in the world.”

Their story is an inspiring one, to be sure. As filmmaker Nathan Clarke portrays in a marvelous short film on the subject, the routine work of oyster farming has a beauty and grandeur all of its own.

The film moves slowly and steadily, accompanied by no narration other than the raw rumble of boats and machinery and the quiet clatter of oysters jostling in cages and nets. Clarke lets the work sing for itself, and my, how the song sticks. Man cultivates nature, and nature responds by cultivating man.

Regardless of what contributed to the decline of these oysters — disease, pollution, overharvesting, or otherwise — these entrepreneurs and watermen aren’t waiting around for the conditions to change. They aren’t complaining, making excuses, or pointing fingers. Instead, they are proactively wielding their gifts, skills, and creative energy to bring back that which has been lost, and all for the taste buds of the rest of us.

2189811638_61d2ab3d74_zThis is what restorative stewardship and creative service look like: taking a tragedy of the commons and transforming it into a cause for the common good.

It’s beautiful stuff to behold.

For more on how our creative service contributes to whole-scale flourishing, watch Episode 3 of For the Life of the World: Letters to the Exiles.

(Originally published at the Acton PowerBlog)

(Photo credit: Walwyn)

"Need an industrial appraisal company? Industrial Auctions has experience in buying and selling of ..."

Charles Koch’s Metaphysics of Business
"Well, I don;'t see God coming down and having a little talk with the high ..."

Is God Opposed to Christians Making ..."
"What a lousy article. It is amazing how the owners of this website allow this ..."

The 6 Elves of Capitalism
"What love? Certainly not for the human race when you look at unregulated capitalism, slavery, ..."

Why Capitalism Is Really About Love

Browse Our Archives