Manila Clams

Manila Clam image
Common Name Manila Clams
Market Name littleneck clam
Scientific name Venerupis philippinarum, Tapes phillipinarum

Sourcing Summary

Size

1-2.5 in.

Manila clams are generally sold live year-round, although some quantities may be frozen whole. These small clams tend to be soft and sweet in taste. Buyers generally recommend avoiding buying clams by the bushel, a common measure used on the East Coast, because the definition of a bushel can vary among suppliers. If buying by the bushel, check to make sure that the shipments are what was paid for. The best Manila clam shelf life and meat yield is in the winter time, which coincides with reduced prices due to lower demand from coastal resorts, according to some buyers. After the clams spawn in the summer, shelf life drops off.

Product Forms

Fresh/Frozen
Frozen
Product Forms
Half Shell
Meat
Fresh/Frozen
Fresh
Product Forms
Half Shell
Meat
Raw Shucked

Fresh Seasonal Availability

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
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Culinary Composition

Firm

Texture

Cooking Methods

Advisory Concern

Paralytic Shellfish Poisoning

Health/Nutrition

Nutrition facts

Serving Size: 100g
Amount per serving
Calories 74
Total Fat 1g
Cholesterol 34mg
Sodium - Sodium 56mg
Carbohydrates 0g
Protein 13g

Conservation Criteria - Wild

Conservation Criteria - Farmed

Effluent

Water quality is monitored by a national shellfish sanitation program. Manila clam aquaculture production is well-managed, according to the Monterey Bay Aquarium.

Habitat Impacts

Clam farms are usually located in protected beaches, inlets, and estuaries that have been registered with a shellfish authority. On the U.S. Pacific coast, Manila clams are farmed from cultured beds that have received a national permit through the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. In British Columbia, Manila clams are cultured and harvested from wild beds by hand.

Feed

Shellfish are filterfeeders so they generally don’t require additional feed beyond seawater. Some farmers may add some algae as feed but clams can actually lower the levels of nitrogen, phosphorous, and other particles in water, effectively cleaning it. As a result, no controls are necessary for effluent from Manila clam farming operations.

Disease, Pathogen and Parasite Interaction

The majority of farming for clams occurs with the native range of individual species of clams, and although the grow-out phase for clams occurs in open systems (coastal areas and estuaries), the risk to wild stocks is therefore considered low. Additionally, there is little chance of escape by juvenile or adult clams since they are usually secured by netting &/or bags. 

Escapes and Introduced Species

Although the species is native to Japan, Manila clams have been farmed along the Pacific coast of U.S. and Canada since the 1930s so there are no negative impacts on native ecosystems. Manila clams are farmed at high densities, but these volumes do not surpass what the beaches can handle. However, outside pollution and contamination from bacteria as well as brown tides have forced beach closures, causing farms to close as well. The mesh netting used to deter predators is not considered harmful. Manila clams are usually collected with tongs, rakes, and handheld dredges that don’t harm the seafloor the way large hydraulic dredges used for collecting other clams can, according to the Seafood Choices Alliance and the Monterey Bay Aquarium.

Origin Method Ratings
Worldwide Dredge  
Worldwide Hand Harvest  
Worldwide Hand Rake  
All Other Origins All Other Farming Methods    
Name Country State / Province
Bee Islets Growers Corp. Canada British Columbia
Chelsea Farms United States Washington
Clipper Ship, Inc. United States Washington
Coast Seafoods Company United States Washington
Fanny Bay Oysters Canada British Columbia
J.J Brenner Oyster Co. United States Washington
Jamestown S'Klallam Tribe United States Washington
Jones Family Farms United States Washington
Little Skookum Shellfish Growers, Inc. United States Washington
Marinelli Shellfish Co. United States Washington
Marx Foods United States Washington
National Fish & Oyster Company United States Washington
Nisbet Oyster Co., Inc. United States Washington
Northwest Fresh Seafood Company United States Oregon
Ocean Beauty Seafoods LLC United States Washington
Okeover Organic Oysters Canada British Columbia
OM Seafood Company United States Oregon
Organic Ocean Seafood Inc. Canada British Columbia
Out Landish Shellfish Guild Canada British Columbia
Penn Cove Shellfish, LLC. United States Washington
Pike Place Fish Market United States Washington
Royal Hawaiian Seafood United States California
Sea Forager, Inc. United States California
Sea-Mar Shellfish Co., LLC United States Washington
Smokey Bay Seafood Company, Ltd. Canada British Columbia
Wild Edibles, Inc. United States New York
WildCatch Seafood Products LLC United States Washington