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Chinese Make Move On Oregon Oysters

Oregon Oyster Farms Inc. might be forming a joint venture with an unnamed Chinese company.

Xiao Huaquan, commercial consul to the Chinese consulate in San Francisco, said he expects the Chinese company will invest $500,000 to $1 million in Oregon Oyster Farms.

Oregon Oyster Farms operates an oyster hatchery at the former OreAqua salmon ranch at South Beach, across Yaquina Bay from Newport.

Oregon Oyster Farms could grow more quickly with an infusion of investment capital, said Tom Becker, company president.

The operation now employs about 50 people. With investment capital, it could employ 200 to 300 within the next decade.

“Without them, it’s going to be 20 years to get where we want to be,” Becker said. “With them, we can do it in five.”

Although China has a huge market for oysters, produce from the farm would be sold in the United States, Xiao and farm owners said.

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