Our seasoned shellfish farmers, hatchery specialists, marine biologists, oceanographers, share a singular passion for farming the sea while preserving coastal resources. Our farm is a tale about a special breed of people who make their home in a community that shares their love of the sea and supports its historic, working waterfront heritage.

Becoming a Carlsbad Aquafarm crew member requires a strong work ethic and dedication to mastering new skills in a demanding trade. Farming the sea often becomes a way of life and a family tradition that can span generations.

From dawn to dusk our crew foreman has spent years rigging longlines, deftly piloting a harvest barge through narrow shellfish rafts, while guiding a 2-ton crane, plucking lines draped with mussel, and delicately placing them on the deck, while his crew strips mussels from lines into deck totes. Now he hands down his hard-won knowhow and abiding respect for the sea to the next generation of shellfish farmers who will be entrusted to continue a time-honored tradition of working in harmony with the sea, bringing the very finest shellfish to market.

Our hatchery manager deftly nurtures shellfish spawn from nearly invisible, wispy plumes of life swirling in a spawning tank, to become the finest oysters and mussels grown anywhere. From such fragile beginnings, the odds of a mollusk reaching maturity range from minuscule to almost none at all. Barely one-in-ten million shellfish larvae survive to reach adulthood. Then, only after months of relentless attention and nurturing, will a hand-full of larvae become “Carlsbad Blondes and Lunas,” sought-after by chefs and connoisseurs.

Carlsbad’s long commitment to sustainable shellfish aquaculture and coastal habitat stewardship stretches back to the incorporation of the city in 1952, coinciding with the start of aquaculture in the beach-side community. Preserving coastal resources and supporting its hometown shellfish farm is interwoven into the cultural fabric of Carlsbad and its working waterfront. Carlsbad’s unwavering support for our shellfish farm is an obligation we take seriously. Over the years the farm has become a cherished part of the Carlsbad brand, and is evident in the quality seafood that proudly bears the Carlsbad name and the health of Agua Hedionda Lagoon.

Play the video to see more of how we work