Raw Oysters, especially ‘wild’, are excellent sources of several minerals, including iron, zinc and selenium, which are often low in the modern diet. They are also an excellent source of Vitamin B12. Oysters are considered the healthiest when eaten raw on the half shell.
A search on PubMed also reveals that eating these creatures can be of some risk for infections mostly gastroenteritis. May be drinking wine with them prevents some infections.
With current practices the outbreak of severe forms of gastroenteritis such as caused by salmonella are history. These practices are coliform monitoring (monitoring for the presence of pathogen coliform bacteria), time/temperature assessment during harvest and storage to document refrigeration requirements, and product labeling for source and harvest dates in order to ensure rapid trace-back should an outbreak occur.
Recent developments in post harvesting processing such as storage in seawater sterilized by ozonation or ultraviolet light are promising but developments in this field are needed. It can’t with hold me from eating them. What about you?
Quote by Ernest Hemingway (A Moveable Feast)
“As I ate the oysters with their strong taste of the sea and their faint metallic taste that the cold white wine washed away, leaving only the sea taste and the succulent texture, and as I drank their cold liquid from each shell and washed it down with the crisp taste of the wine, I lost the empty feeling and began to be happy and to make plans.”
Wright, A., Danyluk, M., & Otwell, W. (2009). Pathogens in raw foods: what the salad bar can learn from the raw bar Current Opinion in Biotechnology, 20 (2), 172-177 DOI: 10.1016/j.copbio.2009.03.006