Why Are Oysters So Expensive? (Top 3 Reasons Explained)

Oysters are one of the rare delicacies you can enjoy in the world. Not all countries enjoy this as a staple, and the prices of this seafood aren’t a joke either. Thus, if you’re a fan of oysters, you may wonder why they get to have steep prices. So, you may ask:

Why are oysters so expensive? Oysters are so expensive because of the high demand for such. Since oysters are grown in the sea, it’s not easy for seafood to grow and maintain. Further, it takes years before catching, and the preparation method is delicate. Thus, the prices to enjoy this seafood can be pretty expensive.

One thing to note about oysters is that they are usually served raw or steamed. Thus, it’s always essential for oysters to remain fresh. With so many things needed to serve oysters, it’s no wonder why they get to be so expensive. It’s also for this reason that you may wonder if they are worth the price.

This article will see our in-depth take on oysters and why they are so expensive. This way, you can understand how that price has gone up and if it’s worth spending money to enjoy these seafood delicacies. 

Without further ado, let’s get into it!

Why Are Oysters So ExpensivePin

Are oysters expensive?

Yes, oysters are expensive, and it’s because of the high demand for such that it exceeds the supply. Another thing is that the production costs and the method of preparation for such adds up to the cost of serving oysters. 

Why are oysters so expensive?

Oysters are expensive mainly because of three common reasons. Here’s a quick peek at these reasons:

High Demand

Oysters are so expensive due to the high demand for such. Oysters are well-loved by many consumers not only because of their fresh flavor but also for their nutrients. 

Oysters were once inexpensive, and that’s because of the population. However, during the recent years, the population of oysters decreased drastically, and as the demand grew, the price suddenly increased.


Another reason why oysters are so expensive is that the production of such costs a lot. Since oysters grow in the sea, they need to be harvested in a way that costs a lot. 

Also, some oyster farmers grow their oysters to meet the demands. Such a type of farming takes years and several expenses. Thus, it adds up to the price of the oysters.


The last reason why oysters are so expensive is their careful preparation. In general, oysters are meant to be served fresh. Thus, a lot of preparation and effort goes into preserving the freshness of oysters, and it’s something that takes a lot of expense

In short, most restaurants and all the oyster suppliers add extra costs to earn from all their efforts and work done. 

How much do oysters cost?

Oysters roughly cost anywhere between $1 to $3, but it still depends on where you get them. If you’re buying it in grocery stores in bulk, you can pay a lower price of at least 50 to 80 cents per oyster. However, if you buy it fresh from a restaurant, you can expect to pay at least $1 to $3 per oyster.

In most cases, restaurants and suppliers in markets sell oysters in dozens since no one will likely buy only a piece or two or such. When you’re buying a dozen, you can expect to pay around $30.

As I mentioned earlier, buying in bulk can cost less since it will end up with less than a dollar per piece of an oyster.

Are oysters expensive in restaurants?

Yes, oysters are expensive at restaurants. While you can get a dozen of oysters at grocery stores for around $30, you should expect higher prices per dozen of oysters in a restaurant. It’s because of all the service charges and costs to serve you fresh oysters that you’ll enjoy at their best.

How much are oysters at a restaurant?

Oysters at restaurants can cost around $35 to $60 per dozen, around $4 to $5 per oyster. It’s pretty expensive since you can get oysters for lower prices when you buy them in bulk in grocery stores or directly from oyster farmers.

When did oysters become expensive?

Oysters have become expensive in recent decades, becoming a delicacy in restaurants. Back then, oysters are so cheap that ordinary people only eat them. However, as the oysters became a part of restaurant menus, they quickly grew in popularity and increased demand.

As of the moment, oysters are now a rare and expensive delicacy, making the price higher.

Why do oysters cost more than mussels?

Oysters cost more than mussels because they are higher in demand while having a lower supply. Mussels, on the other hand, are not so famous, and they have a steady supply, which means it doesn’t get any increase in price apart from the preparation and production costs. Mussels are also meant to be cooked rather than eaten fresh, so they can remain frozen and have a longer shelf life than oysters.

Are oysters expensive all over the world?

Yes, oysters are expensive all over the world. Oysters can cost around $1 to $3 per piece, or they can be around $30 per dozen. 

Some oysters can be so expensive because of their preparation costs. For instance, the most expensive oyster globally is the Coffin Bay King Oysters which takes around 6 to 7 years to grow. These oysters can weigh a kilo, and they cost around $80 each.

Are oysters worth the money?

Yes, oysters are worth the money, especially for people who want to enjoy their flavor from time to time. However, if you’re not someone who likes to indulge in some expensive food, you can always look for other alternatives.

In general, oysters are worth the money not only because of the flavor and taste but also because of the nutrients and health benefits. For instance, this seafood offers low amounts of calories and rich nutrients. Thus, it’s a healthy option to indulge without worrying about risks.


In a nutshell, The high demand for oysters makes them so expensive. As oysters are grown in the sea, they are challenging to grow and maintain. Furthermore, the preparation method is delicate, and it takes years for the catch to be caught. Therefore, it is pretty expensive to enjoy this seafood.

The oyster is usually served raw or steamed. Freshness is therefore essential for oysters. As oysters require so many things to be served, it’s no wonder they are so expensive. We hope this article enlightened you on why oysters are expensive. It depends on you if the oysters are worth the price you’re paying.

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Image credits – Canva

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