Aquaculture North America

Tide sells oyster hatchery to shellfish company 

March 12, 2024
By Aquaculture North America staff

The Merrymeeting Shellfish Company is purchasing Running Tide’s oyster hatchery located at Mitchell Field in Harpswell, Maine.

The company has entered a new lease with the Town of Harpswell, which was approved by the Harpswell Select Board with an effective date of Feb.1.

“Running Tide is thrilled that the facility will continue to produce shellfish seed for Maine’s aquaculture sector. We are confident that the Merrymeeting team will be a great fit,” said Adam Baske of Running Tide.

Running Tide leased the former U.S. Navy garage building on the waterfront at George J. Mitchell Field from the Town of Harpswell in December of 2018. That building which had an initial five-year lease was renovated to convert it into an oyster hatchery. Although Merrymeeting Shellfish is purchasing the business it intends to continue to operate the Mitchell Field facility as an oyster hatchery.  Matt Nixon, the owner of Merrymeeting Shellfish looks forward to becoming a part of the Harpswell marine business community.  

“As one of Maine’s only locally and domestically owned and operated shellfish hatcheries, our goal is to provide a great product made by local employees making a livable wage, offered at a consistent and reasonable price. We’re here to support Maine’s burgeoning shellfish aquaculture industry and Harpswell has demonstrated exceptional foresight ty seeing the value in continuing to dedicate a small portion of Mitchell Field to this pursuit. We look forward to working with our client farms, our sister company, Muddy River Farm Aquaponics, LLC in Bath, and importantly, with the Town of Harpswell to ensure a sustainable food future for Maine and New England,” said Nixon.  

“The Town is very pleased to have a tenant such as Merrymeeting Shellfish, under the direction of Matt Nixon, take over operations at the site used by Running Tide. Both companies fit the vision established by the Town for marine business at Mitchell Field.  The Town looks forward to Merrymeeting Shellfish having a successful operation and building on what Running Tide started,” said Kevin Johnson, chair Select Board. 

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