COMES is fortunate to be co-located with the United States Department of Agriculture at Hatfield Marine Science Center. COMES collaborates with the USDA on shellfish research, primarily oyster research. The USDA's research arm, the Agricultural Research Service, conducts various kinds of agriculture-related research all over the United States. This research might relate to improving crop yield, breeding for disease-resistance, or exploring the health effects of certain foods.
The USDA's ARS-Newport branch works directly with COMES faculty member Chris Langdon and the Molluscan Broodstock Program to research and improve the yield and health of Pacific oysters on the Oregon Coast. One of the current COMES-ARS research projects focuses on breeding oysters that are resistant to Oyster Herpes (Ostreid Herpesvirus-1, or OsHV-1).