The COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent restaurant closures had a significant impact on many agricultural businesses in South Carolina. One of the most impacted was the seafood industry. While the exact magnitude of the impact is difficult to calculate, there is some evidence indicating that the shellfish industry was particularly hard hit. Data such as shellfish consumption trends, the amount of shellfish consumed in restaurants, and harvest seasons tell part of the story. Anecdotal evidence from producers themselves also suggests the extent of the impact. While there are funds available to mitigate some of this damage through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, it is not going to be enough.

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