Washington State leads the nation in the production of farm shellfish. Samish Bay has a large number of shellfish bed. A number of agencies in Skagit County participate in the Clean Samish Initiative, an effort to improve water quality in Samish Bay. Water quality is the lifeblood of shellfish farmers because shellfish are filter feeders. One oyster can filter up to 65 gallons of water each day, and if the water is contaminated, the oyster will soak up those contaminants, deeming it inedible - a lost crop for the shellfish farmers. The goal of the initiative is to provide for longterm water sustainability, so the residents of Skagit County can have fishable water.
The Clean Samish Initiative