Then, in 2015, Doug and Dan officially formed Mere Point Oyster Company (MPOC). They chose to site their farms where they live – in the clear, deep waters of Maquoit and Mere Point Bays. These bays are some of Maine’s most ecologically significant areas because of the rich marine life they support. They started with 10,000 oysters the first year and added another 10,000 in 2016. They sold the first oysters directly to people out on Mere Point, storing their gear in Doug’s barn, which has become MPOC’s head quarters. People loved that the oysters were grown right there. In 2017, they added another 250,000 oysters and now had enough to sell to The Brunswick Inn and Monstweag Restaurant in Woolwich. This year, they opened a booth at the Brunswick Farmer’s Market at Crystal Springs Farm. As the oyster crop continues to grow, they hope to expand to more restaurants and markets. And, they will be experimenting with growing other types of shellfish including mussels and scallops.
From the very beginning, Mere Point Oyster Company has been a local business committed to their local community. Their seed comes from Maine hatcheries and the seafood retailers and suppliers they work with are all based in Maine too. It’s all part of their mission to support working waterfronts along the coast by providing new sustainable opportunities for coastal residents and younger generations. That’s why you will find Dan out in the mud flats teaching Brunswick students about how clams grow and Doug teaching his sons how to manage the family business.
Enhancing local ecosystems and supporting working waterfront communities are laudable goals, but in the end it’s all about taste – fresh, clean and sweet. Only 40% of the oysters they grow are high enough in quality to be called a Mere Point Oyster. They hand sort them to make sure.