New Orleans Oyster Processor Runs Out Of Oysters – NPR

Posted by Henry Taksier, June 12, 2010

“The fallout from the BP oil spill continues to ripple through the Gulf economy. This week, it caught up to P&J Oyster Co. in New Orleans.

The owners say it’s the oldest continuously operating oyster processor in America. But thanks to the oil, they now have no oysters to process.

An Emotional Moment

Oysterman Mitch Jurisich first spotted oil floating on the water above his beds at 7:30 in the morning. It was just yards away from where his grandparents first settled after emigrating from Croatia almost a century ago.

“This is the last of our areas that we had open from our family to harvest oysters,” Jurisich says. “We were fortunate enough to have one little slice of pie left that we were still farming from, and that slice of pie now is gone.”

Jurisich had hoped somehow the oyster beds his family has leased and farmed for so many years would be spared. Maybe his grandmother was watching over them.

“Everything we’ve worked so hard our whole life to build could be done for. It’s not the way we like to think, but when you start seeing it, you know reality is here now, you know,” he says.”

Read or listen to the rest via New Orleans Oyster Processor Runs Out Of Oysters – NPR