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Hoopers Island Expands Equipment Line

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Hoopers Island signs exclusive deal to promote and sell OysterGro in four states

February 16, 2017 - Fishing Creek, Maryland – Hoopers Island Oyster Aquaculture has been named the exclusive distributor of OysterGro® turnkey aquaculture systems in Maryland, Delaware, Rhode Island and Virginia. The announcement was made in advance of Aquaculture America, Feb. 19-22, in San Antonio by Hoopers Island President Ricky Fitzhugh and Vice President Johnny Shockley along with OysterGro® BBI Group Vice President Steen Gunderson.

The agreement allows Hoopers Island’s rapidly growing equipment division to promote and sell OysterGro’s products to oyster farmers in the four states who are looking to enter the aquaculture industry or grow their existing operations. OysterGro is based in Bouctouche, New Brunswick, Canada.

“We are excited to join forces with Hoopers Island as we expand BBI Group’s distribution network in the Mid-Atlantic and Rhode Island,” said Gunderson. “The customer-focused Hoopers Island team has established a reputation for delivering high quality services and premium equipment to their clients. They are well known in the industry for going the extra mile to meet their customer’s needs.”

Developed from 15 years of innovation and testing, OysterGro offers a cost-efficient solution for high-quality oyster production. The system includes compact wire mesh housing with two specially designed floats that provide a versatile environment for the growth, cleaning, sorting, protection and survival of oysters in an farming environment.

“Over the past five years, Hoopers Island has pioneered on-the-bottom cages and aquaculture equipment used by hundreds of oyster growers in North American and as far as Japan,” Shockley said. “Adding OysterGro’s floating on-the-surface cages allows us to broaden our equipment line-up and offer a wider selection of products best suited for the marine environment of our customers’ farming operations.”

OysterGro is designed for floating, easy flipping to eliminate fouling and secondary spat, submerging to protect oysters during winter or hurricane weather and re-floating in the spring or when conditions improve.

“The OysterGro system is versatile and well suited for conditions in the Chesapeake, Delaware and Narragansett bays,” Shockley explained. “It reduces fouling and provides perpetual movement at the surface which produces a more perfect oyster.”

He said the two companies are also working on new product development.

“In the months ahead, we will work jointly with OysterGro to develop specialized mechanical systems that will complement each other’s product lines.”

For information about Hoopers Island aquaculture equipment and services and to schedule an appointment to learn more about OysterGro®, call 410-397-3664 or visit www.HIOAC.com.

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About OysterGro®

Developed in collaboration with marine biologists, commercial oystermen, equipment manufacturers & designers, the OysterGro® system is made available by Bouctouche Bay Industries, a long-established and respected manufacturer & supplier to fishing & aquaculture sectors in Atlantic Canada. For more information, visit www.OysterGro.com.

About Hoopers Island Oyster Aquaculture Company

Based on the fertile waters of Maryland’s Chesapeake Bay, Hoopers Island Oyster Aquaculture produces and markets high quality half-shell oysters under the Chesapeake Gold, Holy Grail and Whitewood Cove brand names. The company’s equipment division supports the aquaculture industry throughout the world by manufacturing and distributing a variety of products, including upwellers, cages, sorters, graders, tumblers and conveyors. In Spring 2017, HIOAC will open Maryland’s first commercial oyster hatchery to establish Chesapeake oysters as a sustainable product and build an industry that parallels the existing public fishery. For more information, visit www.HIOAC.com.

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