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Oyster farmers at Festival vie for world’s biggest oyster

The world record for the biggest oyster could be broken at Narooma Oyster Festival this Saturday.

‘It should be fun because we’ll have several possible contenders, all Pacific Oysters from the Clyde River,’ said Festival chairman Niels Bendixsen.

The Guinness Book of Records (GBR) lists the current world’s biggest oyster as a Pacific Oyster (Crassiostrea gigas) found on the Danish shores of the Wadden Sea in 2013.

It measured 35.5cm long and 10.7 cm wide, described at the time as ‘the size of a man’s large and sturdy shoe’. It has five oysters attached, and the cluster then weighed 1.62kg. It was estimated to be 15-20 years old and it is still alive and apparently still growing.

Clyde River oyster farmer Bernie Connell reckons some of his oysters are bigger.

‘I’ve got a few that would weigh more than the world record and one is nudging 2kg,’ he said. ‘They’re single specimens with no other oysters attached and what’s amazing is they’re only four year old.

‘If I do end up with the world champion, I won’t be selling it. I’ll keep it growing.’

He thinks a few other Clyde River farmers also have oysters that would beat the world record, but adds whether one of his is the biggest will have to wait until the judge’s decision on Saturday.

All contenders will be weighed and measured at the Festival on the Katungul Main Stage at 12.15pm when they will also be photographed. That information will be then sent off to the Guinness Book of Records office.

Narooma’s Oyster Festival launches with a bang this Friday afternoon at 4.30pm with a free family concert, a freestyle motocross display and fantastic fireworks.

The Festival this Saturday showcases oysters from eight estuaries on the south coast, one of the world’s most environmentally sustainable oyster growing regions, as well as other local produce and the area’s many features.

Saturday’s programme (10-4pm) includes the celebrity chefs’ cooking demonstrations, the Ultimate Oyster Experience, the oyster shucking competition, displays of local Yuin culture, over 70 stalls featuring local produce especially oysters, kite flying and free kids’ rides.

Live music on Saturday starts at 10am and goes through to 6pm, as will the bar and Oyster Bar.

Check Narooma Oyster Festival webpage and Facebook for more information and the full programme.

Above: Could one of these be the world’s biggest oyster? Clyde River oyster farmer Bernie Connell thinks he’s in with a chance at the weigh-in at Narooma Oyster Festival this Saturday.

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