Blackshell Farm was co-founded by Westport local Michael Mulloy in August 1983. From small beginnings, our company now spans 46 hectares across three sites in the sheltered Clew Bay, employing seven full-time and part-time staff and operating two boats in the Atlantic Ocean. We grow the naturally occurring mytilus edulis mussels in the pristine waters of Clew Bay.
In 2005, Mulloy travelled to New Zealand to witness the country’s innovative mussel harvesting techniques first-hand. After seeing how mechanising mussel packing reduced the reliance on manual labour, he brought the more efficient New Zealand method to Ireland. He adapted Blackshell Farm’s mussel boat for the continuous rope system and began working with Bord Iascaigh Mhara (BIM) to promote this more efficient practice to national and international visitors.
In 2010 Blackshell expanded further, investing in specialist machinery and beginning production of biodegradable cotton mesh used in mussel seeding. This mussel mesh is currently supplied to mussel producers across Ireland, Scotland, Holland, France and beyond. Mulloy is committed to driving the adoption of sustainable mussel harvesting practices in Ireland. He currently serves as chairman of IFA Aquaculture (Irish Farmer’s Association Aquaculture division).
Michael's son Louis and daughter Joan also work in Blackshell Farm.
The team is completed by experienced mussel farmers and skippers Paul and Feargal, Barbara in the office as well as part and full time staff who work throughout the season.