Local oyster business sees success after 10 On Your Side story

Virginia Beach

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va (WAVY) — One of the many businesses hit hard during the pandemic is the oyster growing business.

Saturday, 10 On Your Side’s Tamara Scott caught back up with farmers who last month said they were feeling impacts.

Now, they say they have been successful since the original story aired.

When we first saw Taryn and Aaron Rowland, the two told us how business ultimately stopped for them.

With the help of the community, today they are back on track.

Taryn and Aaron were ready for the sales of their oysters to flow easily and instead, COVID-19 came crashing in like a big wave.

“Starting in early March our sales just dropped from where we were selling our oysters to before this, they stopped ordering and nothing was coming in,” said Taryn.

With the help of the local community, the two set up shop on Saturday in the Virginia Beach Vibe district and sold 24-hundred oysters.

“We sold all of our oysters through pre-order and met people here just to share our oysters with them,” said Taryn.

They thought at first they would make no profit this season.

“It was about two weeks of anxiety, then you get kind of burned out on that, and at some point, you make the decision to move forward in some way — in whatever way you can,” said Aaron.

But when all their pre-orders sold out, it was a 180 degree feeling.

“That was about 10 minutes of celebration and then understanding how much work we just signed up for,” Aaron added.

“We were getting to the point that we thought our oysters were getting too big to sell to restaurants. I think we have almost sold all of those because of the outreach from the community so, we are back on track now.”

Well, they are back on track with their hearts full and several members of the community belly’s are full. The duo has some advice for other businesses.

“The amazing amount of support that there is in the community, people really do want to reach out and help when they can. From the business side, you never know when things are going to come — so just be ready for anything and be ready to do it when the time comes,” said Aaron.

The Rowland’s say that if you can’t wait for their next pop up shop, they encourage you to support other local oyster farming businesses as well.

If you’d like to support the duo and Rogue Oysters, you can find them on social media or their website.


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