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Our Story

Hello, my name is Tyler Chadwick- founder and owner of Carolina Gold Oyster Company. Carolina Gold Oyster Company started in 2018 but our journey started well before then. As a child, I grew up in the commercial fishing industry in North Carolina. I can remember spending my summers on the back of a shrimp boat and digging for clams on the shores of Newport River. In 2015-2016, I started fishing along with a good friend. We fished crab pots, flounder nets, and gigged flounder during the summer. During the winter we would harvest wild oysters. 

I started to notice it was hard to find true North Carolina seafood in our state. I decided I needed to do something about it. In 2016, I opened Chadwick’s Seafood. We originally started our company to provide fresh, local seafood to all our customers. That’s what we did until we closed Chadwick’s Seafood in 2020.
In the 2016-2017 oyster season, I started to notice that the wild oyster harvest had not been as plentiful as years before. There was overregulation of the wild industry and that made it extremely difficult to make a living on the water. At that point, I needed to decide what I was going to do to keep my career on the water!
Protecting our environment and wetlands has always been important to me. I started to research on what I could do to help preserve and improve our environment, while at the same time provide a living on the water. I came across oyster farming. It fascinated me and I wanted to know more about it. 
For the next year, I learned everything I could about oyster farming. I even volunteered to work on other local farms to learn more about the industry! After my research and field experience, I knew I had to start my own mariculture farm! The hardest part was finding a location for our farm. After extensive research and consideration, we finally found the perfect location. This was the birth of Carolina Gold Oyster Company. 
Starting Carolina Gold Oyster Company was a huge commitment to myself, family, and my community. I will always strive to do everything I can to help protect and better our environment and wetlands. Not only does our farm improve the water quality; it provides tons of habitats for small juvenile fish, removes carbon, and it’s 100% a sustainable protein. Oyster farming has no negative impact on our environment and that’s something to get behind! We are a proud member of the Shellfish Growers Climate Coalition partnership with The Nature Conservancy to help fight climate change.

When you are enjoying Carolina Gold Oysters, you are doing your part as well! Welcome to Carolina Gold Oyster Company, where the true Gold is on the East Coast! 

The meaning behind Carolina Gold Oyster Company

Carolina Gold Oyster Company always strives to provide the highest quality products. Two years ago, Tyler Chadwick (owner) started his oyster campaign for fresh, local oysters that he would harvest himself. He began the day riding out on the water trying to find wild oysters to harvest that already were not in a private bed. The quality and abundance he found was very, very low. So, Tyler started to consider an oyster lease that would provide him an optimal supply of oysters so he could start providing his community with a 100% organic, 100% sustainable oyster. Once he decided thats what he was going to do, he immediately did research. Following his research, he discovered what it takes to grow an oyster from start to finish and that it was going to be a tedious process. Tyler applied for a lease through the NC Division of Marine Fisheries and after 8 long months, he was granted the lease! Carolina Gold Oysters will be the meaning of a true, wild oyster.

How we grow our Oysters and how long does it take to grow?

Carolina Gold Oysters are grown in the wild, just like any other wild oyster! Oysters feed off the natural plankton and algae organisms that already grow in the water. Carolina Gold Oysters grow in a floating bag system. This system has floating mesh bags that hold the oysters just below the surface in the water column. To have a general idea, the water column is measured from the bottom surface of the body of water to the top surface of the body of water. This area of the water column is proven to be the highest quality of food provided by Mother Nature. Because Carolina Gold Oysters are growing in the water column, they never touch the mud, which is preventative of being gritty and muddy when harvested.

A Carolina Gold Oyster, a 10 to 12-millimeter seedling to a full 3-inch oyster, takes between 6-9 months (fastest growing) and 10-18 months (slowest growing). An oyster that grows in the mud takes about 3 years to grow full size.

When do we harvest our oysters?

If you are an oyster lover, I’m sure you have heard of the “R-Rule” (can I eat oysters in a month without an R). If you haven’t, the “R-Rule” is referring to the months in the year that include the letter ‘r’ (September, October, November, December, January and March). The question is, does this rule still apply in todays technology and research?

The “R-Rule” is out of style! Let’s move into the now and future in the world of oysters. Enjoy oysters every month of the year!

What we specialize in!

Carolina Gold Oyster Company specializes in growing single oysters, rather than oysters that grow in a cluster. All the oysters are uniform in size and have a deep cup. There are many, many ways to prepare Carolina Gold Oysters. You can serve them raw on the half shell, steam them, or even make oyster Rockefeller. Each way to prepare them is unique, but the true flavor is in the oyster itself.

Looking for fresh, local oysters but no luck year-round? Look no further! You can order oysters online today in the comfort of your own home! Enjoy Carolina Gold Oysters today with free overnight shipping to your doorstep, ready to eat or cook!

Where oysters are grown

Our oysters are raised in the waters of Wards Creek, which is a small creek off North River. North River has two major sources of fresh ocean water that feeds our oysters twice a day (at both high tides). This makes the oysters very meaty and gives them a fresh, salty and ocean taste.

Customer Testimonials