A Joint Resolution designating the third weekend in October of each year as the “Shuck, Sip, and Slurp Weekend” for the promotion of New Jersey oysters, wine and beer.
Whereas, Demand for oysters is growing, driven by increased popularity at raw bars and seafood restaurants, and there is a renewed interest in the farming and culture of oysters in the State of New Jersey; and
Whereas, New Jersey’s coastal waters are particularly suited to aquaculture, including the production of oysters, and there is a strong local and regional demand for locally grown oysters; and
Whereas, The growth of oyster production in New Jersey benefits local small businesses, creates jobs and adds value to the State economy, and promotes the development of sustainable working waterfronts; and
Whereas, The New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station at Rutgers University has pioneered cutting-edge research in oyster production, including sustainable farming techniques and varieties of oyster seed now in high demand nationally and internationally; and
Whereas, Oyster production involves no fertilizers, feeds, or other chemicals, and has been found to be environmentally beneficial to coastal waters by promoting biodiversity, denitrification, and clean water; and
Whereas, Oysters have a flavor unique to the waters they are grown in, and New Jersey oysters are unique local products with appeal to restaurants and raw bars; and
Whereas, Nationally, demand for craft beers has grown rapidly in recent years, with brewers realizing nationwide in 2014 a 22% increase in retail dollar value of craft beers, according to the Brewers Association, the national trade association representing small and independent American craft brewers, and New Jersey has seen the number of local breweries in the State grow to close to 30; and
Whereas, New Jersey has witnessed an incredible growth in wineries, from nine in the year 2000 to over fifty today, with a total economic impact of $231 million, according to a report commissioned by the Garden State Wine Growers Association in 2011; and
Whereas, State oysters, wine, and beer represent food and agricultural products unique to New Jersey and provide a major economic benefit to the State economy; and
Whereas, Oysters are often paired with wine or beer, and there is a growing interest in local sources for these products; and
Whereas, Establishing an annual “Shuck, Sip, and Slurp Weekend” for the promotion of New Jersey oysters, wine, and beer would highlight local New Jersey food and agricultural products and promote economic growth in these areas; and
Whereas, The harvest season is an ideal time to highlight New Jersey’s local wine and beer, and by the third weekend in October, oysters have reached maturity and are an ideal size for consumption; now, therefore,
Be It Resolved by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:
1. The third weekend in October of each year is designated as the “Shuck, Sip, and Slurp Weekend” for the promotion of New Jersey oysters, wine, and beer.
2. The Governor may annually issue a proclamation calling upon public officials and citizens of the State to observe the “Shuck, Sip, and Slurp Weekend” with appropriate activities and programs.
3. The Department of Agriculture shall take appropriate measures each year to publicize the “Shuck, Sip, and Slurp Weekend.”
4. This joint resolution shall take effect immediately.
Designates third weekend in October each year as “Shuck, Sip, and Slurp Weekend” to promote NJ oysters, wine, and beer.