It’s Thanksgiving, time for – oysters? - Toledo News Now, News, Weather, Sports, Toledo, OH

It’s Thanksgiving, time for – oysters?

From Auburn University

By Jacque Kochak

AUBURN, AL - Oysters are associated with Thanksgiving everywhere, but especially in the South.  

"By 1863, when President Abraham Lincoln issued a proclamation fixing the date late in November, many families would no sooner skip the oyster course than the turkey," says Pat Curtis, director of the Auburn University Food Systems Initiative.

The briny morsels probably became associated with the Southern version of the holiday because of proximity to the Gulf, says Cova Arias, who researches oyster safety for the Auburn University Department of Fisheries and Allied Aquacultures.

 "Oysters tend to be at their plumpest, tastiest and safest right around Thanksgiving," Arias said.

The popular folk wisdom is that oysters should be eaten only in months ending with "er," like September, October, November and December. That is because the presence of the pathogen Vibrio vulnificus in Gulf oysters, which causes illness in those with compromised immune systems, spikes during the sultry summer months.

V. vulnificus in raw oysters isn't a problem in late November, Arias says, and of course isn't a problem in any oyster dish that is cooked or made from canned oysters.

Gulf oysters are expensive this year because the Gulf oyster industry has been buffeted by a series of disasters – but that won't stop many consumers for whom oyster stuffing is a cherished staple on the groaning Thanksgiving table.

The number of oysters harvested in Alabama waters has decreased during the last few years because of problems ranging from natural disasters such as hurricanes and drought to the granddaddy of all manmade disasters, the BP oil spill. When BP's Deepwater Horizon drilling platform exploded in 2010, some 200 million gallons of oil spewed in coastal waters. Some two million gallons of toxic dispersants were added in an attempt to control the spill.

Two years after the oil spill, the Alabama seafood industry is still battling negative perceptions and fears that Gulf seafood is unsafe. Arias says there is not scientific evidence to support that the seafood is unsafe.

 "Go ahead and enjoy your oyster stuffing," she says. "The price might be a little bit more this year, but oysters are delicious and an important part of Thanksgiving for a lot of people."

  • Headlines from Lucas, Wood, Ottawa, Fulton & Monroe CountiesNewsMore>>

  • Man accused of abducting, killing Sierah Joughin appears in court

    Man accused of abducting, killing Sierah Joughin appears in court

    Monday, December 11 2017 12:13 PM EST2017-12-11 17:13:41 GMT
    James Dean Worley (Source: Corrections Center of Northwest Ohio (CCNO))James Dean Worley (Source: Corrections Center of Northwest Ohio (CCNO))

     James Worley, of Delta, is facing the death penalty for the abduction and death of 20-year-old Sierah Joughin in 2016. 

    More >>

     James Worley, of Delta, is facing the death penalty for the abduction and death of 20-year-old Sierah Joughin in 2016. 

    More >>
  • FIRST ALERT: Another Winter Blast Tonight

    FIRST ALERT: Another Winter Blast Tonight

    Monday, December 11 2017 11:21 AM EST2017-12-11 16:21:19 GMT

    The second in a series of Alberta Clippers will bring another punch of winter tonight and into Tuesday.  Be alert this evening, a burst of snow will be possible around the evening drive.  This may bring a quick 1/2" of snow and very slippery and icy roads.  The main threat of snow arrives overnight with most areas receiving around 1" of an accumulation by daybreak.   Snow will taper off near daybreak, but very gusty winds will arrive, possibl...

    More >>

    The second in a series of Alberta Clippers will bring another punch of winter tonight and into Tuesday.  Be alert this evening, a burst of snow will be possible around the evening drive.  This may bring a quick 1/2" of snow and very slippery and icy roads.  The main threat of snow arrives overnight with most areas receiving around 1" of an accumulation by daybreak.   Snow will taper off near daybreak, but very gusty winds will arrive, possibl...

    More >>
  • Lake Erie Foundation holds forum on algal bloom prevention

    Lake Erie Foundation holds forum on algal bloom prevention

    Monday, December 11 2017 9:01 AM EST2017-12-11 14:01:44 GMT
    (Source: WTOL)(Source: WTOL)

    The public is invited to the forum that will also host scientists and state representatives. 

    More >>

    The public is invited to the forum that will also host scientists and state representatives. 

    More >>
Powered by Frankly