News Blog for Seattle's University District Neighborhood


Person of the Week: U-District Farmers Market’s Bill Whitbeck

November 26th, 2010 · No Comments

By Aina Nadia Mohd Rafee

“These mussels have just arrived on shore this morning!” said Bill Whitbeck to his customers.

On an early Saturday morning, Whitbeck from Taylor Shellfish Farm is one of the many farmers who keep coming back to the U-District Farmers’ Market.

With food on the minds of many this week, we’re profiling Whitbeck as our Person of the Week.  He, along with many others, will be at the U-District Farmer’s Market Saturday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the corner of Northeast 50th Street and University Way.

Whitback has been working with Taylor Shellfish Farm, a locally-owned business based in Shelton, WA for over seven years now. Whitman said that the reason why the business loves to come back to the market every week is because of its community feel.

“Everybody knows everyone.” said Whitbeck.

The most valuable asset to their business is their relationship with the customer. After being a part of the U-District Farmers Market for over seven years now, Whitbeck knows all the regular customers.

Taylor Shellfish Market has grown shellfish in the bays of Puget Sound for 130 years now, said Whitbeck. Today, the business has expanded to Samish,Willapa and Quilcene, WA. Their specialties includes fresh supply of scallops, clams and geoducks.

This fresh, local food can be accessible to anyone. The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (or food stamps) can be redeemed at the Farmers Market as well.

In addition to the Farmers Market, Whitbeck arranges deliveries of the seafood supplies to the restaurants.

Known to his colleagues as “Oyster Bill”, Whitbeck’s work requires him to not only oversee the business at Seattle Farmers’ Market but also manage orders from local restaurants.

“We supply our product to some of the best restaurants in Seattle,” he said.

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