Loading Events

« All Events

  • This event has passed.

Oyster South Industry Symposium 2023

March 9 @ 5:30 pm - March 11 @ 9:00 pm

Our sixth Oyster South Symposium is here! Come celebrate and learn with us in beautiful Savannah, Georgia, March 9-11, 2023!

Download the Symposium brochure with draft schedule.

It’s time to come together again! Our sixth Oyster South Symposium is a meeting to bring together producers, gear suppliers, distributors, chefs, food writers, vendors, researchers, students and managers from the southeast and Gulf coast regions to discuss pressing issues and relevant, practical research on oyster aquaculture. The Symposium is being hosted by Oyster South, a 501(c)(3) non-profit that connects communities and provides resources to foster the success of oyster farming in the southern United States. This meeting is intended for industry members. This year we are holding the meeting on the beautiful grounds of the Ships of the Sea Maritime Museum, in their pavilion and garden area (with heaters if necessary!).

Current Oyster South paid members will receive heavily discounted registration, with 20% off! If you are not a current member, you can join here. We’d love to have you as a member! Registration includes admission to all informational sessions (all day Friday and Saturday), all breaks, the director’s reception on Thursday night, lunch on Friday (Saturday on your own), the ‘Shuck and Tell’ on Saturday night, and the trade show. Don’t wait to buy tickets. Early bird prices will last through February 8th, 2023.

Trade show! One highlight of the meeting is our industry trade show that runs from Friday morning through Saturday afternoon. This year, vendor registration will include two meeting registrations in the price; any additional attendees will need an additional registration. We will add vendors as we get closer but be sure to come out and visit our sponsoring vendors, including Blue Oyster Environmental, FlipFarm, Inland Seafood, Lowcountry Oyster Company, Oceanfarmr, Oyster Seed Holdings, Reed Mariculture, SEAPA, Sea Farms Consulting, the Shellfish Growers Climate Coalition, Shell Game Products, and Submürge. We’re adding more vendors as we go, including Angelo DePaola Consulting, LLC, BlueTrace, Gulf Shellfish Farmers Association, Ketcham Supply, OysterGro Aquafarming Systems, Platipus Earth Anchoring Systems, Virginia Institute of Marine Science – Aquaculture Genetics & Breeding Technology Center and Ward Oyster.

The DeSoto Hotel room block is NOW FULL, so please do not contact them for the group rate. We have a room block set aside at the nearby Cambria Hotel Savannah / Downtown Historic District. They are located at 321 Montgomery Street, Savannah, GA, 31401 Phone: 912-438-5493. Hotels are a quick 20-25 minute ride from the Savannah airport.

More info coming soon on tours, workshops, and agenda. Right now, for sure plan to arrive by Thursday, March 9th to catch up with folks that evening at the Director’s Reception at Service Brewing Company! We have moved the Shuck and Tell party to Saturday night and will be at Ships of the Sea to close out the meeting, so plan to depart on Sunday, March 12th.

We are working on local tours but also encourage you to enjoy Savannah and the Georgia coast.

We are looking for sponsors so please reach out if you’d like to be a sponsor of this year’s symposium to Bill Walton at bill@oystersouth.com.

To put on a successful meeting for the industry while keeping registration costs reasonable, we welcome sponsorships. All sponsors will be recognized on Oyster South social media, have their logo on meeting materials, and be able to provide literature to meeting attendees. Gold sponsors ($5,000) receive either a vendor space and 6 registrations (pending availability) or up to 12 registrations. Silver sponsors ($2,500) receive either a vendor space and 3 registrations or up to 6 registrations. Bronze sponsors ($1,250) receive up to 3 registrations. In-kind sponsorships are also welcome. Please contact Bill Walton at bill@oystersouth.com .

Draft Program (updated January 14, 2023)

Thursday, March 9th, 2023


  • Reserve your spot now to the UGA Shellfish Hatchery! Just click the red ‘get tickets’ button and a new window will open with details.


  • Director’s Welcome Reception @ Service Brewery, 5:30-7:30

Friday, March 10th, 2023 (@ Ships of the Sea Maritime Museum)

  • 8:00-8:30 Coffee, tea
  • 8:30-8:45 Welcome, Beth Walton (Oyster South)
  • 8:45-9:00 Pathology associated with recurring summer oyster mortalities, Ami Wilbur (University of North Carolina Wilmington Shellfish Research Hatchery)
  • 9:00-9:15 Comparison of behavioral and physiological responses to acute thermal stress between diploid and triploid oysters, Kayla Boyd (Auburn University Shellfish Lab)
  • 9:15-10:00 Panel – Managing summer mortality, moderated by Eric Herbst, (NCSG)
  • 10:00-10:20 Break (beverages and snacks)
  • 10:20-10:30 Shell to Shore – Georgia’s Athens-based oyster shell recycling partnership, Hunt Revell (Shell to Shore)
  • 10:30-10:45 Optimizing desiccation for biofouling control in the Chesapeake Bay, MD, Shannon Hood (University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science)
  • 10:45-11:00 Water parameters in bags affected by culture practices, Julia Grenn (Virginia Institute of Marine Science)
  • 11:00-11:15 Insurance options for oyster growers, Matthew Wilkin (USDA Risk Management Agency)
  • 11:15-12:00 Panel – Eye of the beholder: What buyers see in oysters, moderated by Beth Walton (Oyster South) and Bill Walton (Virginia Institute of Marine Science)
  • 12:00-1:00 Lunch (provided)
  • 1:00-1:45 Panel – Workforce Development, moderated by Mario Marquez (Texas Sea Grant) and Sarah Pedigo (South Carolina Sea Grant Consortium)
  • 1:45-2:30 Panel – Agritourism on the half shell: Opportunities for oyster farms, moderated by Leslie Sturmer (University of Florida IFAS)
  • 2:30-3:00 Discussion – Issues Addressing Shellfish Growing at the 2023 Interstate Shellfish Sanitation Conference, led by John Supan, PhD (Sea Farms Consulting LLC, Navy Cove Oyster Company LLC)
  • 3:00-5:00 Trade show and happy hour

Saturday, March 11th, 2023 (@ Ships of the Sea Maritime Museum)

  • 8:30-9:00 Coffee, tea
  • 9:00-9:15 Climate impacts on shellfish farmers in their own words. What they’re experiencing; what they’re doing right now and what they need going forward, Sally McGee, (Climate and Strategic Initiatives, Global Aquaculture Team, Nature Conservancy) & Jackie Wilson (Dauphin Sea Lab/Bama Bay Oysters)
  • 9:15-9:30 Breeding oysters for extreme low salinity, Lexy McCarty (Virginia Institute of Marine Science Marine Advisory Program)
  • 9:30-9:45 The Regional Shellfish Seed Biosecurity Program (RSSBP), David Bushek (Rutgers Haskin Shellfish Research Laboratory)
  • 9:45-10:00 OSH joins the RAS race, Mike Congrove (Oyster Seed Holdings, Inc)
  • 10:00-10:20 Break (beverages and snacks)
  • 10:30-11:15 Panel – Let’s seed the south; strategies for increasing seed availability for southern oyster farms, moderated by Scott Rikard (Auburn University Shellfish Lab) and Tom Bliss (University of Georgia Shellfish Research Lab)
  • 11:15-11:30 Oyster farm gear planning tool, Vicki Pruente (PMAR) & Rusty Grice (The Mississippi Alabama Sea Grant Consortium)
  • 11:30-11:45 Oyster Farming Resilience Index, Rusty Grice (The Mississippi Alabama Sea Grant Consortium)
  • 11:45-12:00 Chesapeake Oyster Alliance: Collaboration across sectors, Tanner Council (Chesapeake Oyster Alliance Manager, Chesapeake Bay Foundation)
  • 12:00-1:30 Lunch (1.5 hours, on your own)
  • 1:30-2:15 Panel – Three Minute Tech Talks, moderated by Andrea Tarnecki (Auburn University Shellfish Lab) and Vicki Pruente (PMAR)
  • 2:15-2:45 Discussion – Tales from wet storage, led by Jordan Shockley (Blue Oyster Environmental)
  • 2:45-3:00 Oyster South Looking Forward, Beth Walton (Oyster South)
  • 3:00-5:00 Trade show and happy hour
  • 6:30-9:00 Shuck and Tell, Ships of the Sea Museum, Savannah, GA

Gold Sponsors

Silver Sponsors

Bronze Sponsors

In-Kind Sponsors


How can I contact the organizer with any questions?

If you have any questions, please contact the Symposium program chair, Bill Walton at bill@oystersouth.com

What’s the refund policy?

Tickets may be refunded up to 7 days before the event. With space limited, we ask folks to be considerate and request refunds as soon as possible to make tickets available to others.

In the event of cancellation or postponement due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we will issue a full refund to all ticketholders.

Do I have to bring my printed ticket to the event?

No, you do not. We will have a will call list at the door.




March 9 @ 5:30 pm
March 11 @ 9:00 pm
Event Category:


Ships Of The Sea Maritime Museum
41 Martin Luther King Junior Boulevard
Savannah, GA 31401 United States


Oyster South
View Organizer Website

Welcome Back!

Login to your account below

Create New Account!

Fill the forms bellow to register

*By registering into our website, you agree to the Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

Retrieve your password

Please enter your username or email address to reset your password.