[2 August/ Stuff]

It is unlikely that Bluff oysters will be farmed in Stuart Island again, as the MPI has called for Big Glory Bay oyster farming to be finished. Ministry for Primary Industries Director of Readiness and Response Geoff Gwyn said the MPI call comes after strong evidence that farming of flat oysters with Bonamia ostreae in the environment wasn’t sustainable. Farmers expect the declaration to cause mass job loss and financial stress for at least three companies operating in the area. MPI also said the removal of infected oysters from Southland and Marlborough farms would be complete in October. Bluff Oyster Management Company Operations Manager, Graeme Wright, said the news that Big Glory Bay oyster farming was unsustainable was devastating for farmers, but a good decision for oysters as a whole.