Photo by Vittles Films

Our Story

Locals Seafood started with a single item for sale: the humble shrimp. In 2010, college buddies Lin & Ryan began selling Stumpy Point shrimp out of a tailgate cooler on the side of the road in Raleigh, North Carolina. The story starts a bit earlier, though.

Ryan was living in the Outer Banks a few years before that tailgate cooler. His fishermen friends would bring over freshly caught fish every night. They would feast on pan-seared sheepshead, crispy soft-shell crabs, and boiled shrimp. Having spent much of his life in the NC piedmont, Ryan wondered why folks further inland didn’t have better access to this resource. After moving back inland himself, he called his buddy Lin with an idea. Could they bring this fresh product to Triangle chefs, grocery stores, and consumers? Would these folks want to eat fish like monkfish, mullet, and mackerel?

The answer was a resounding yes. Locals Seafood is still dedicated to that original idea today. Our crew drives to the coast 4 to 5 times a week to buy super fresh premium seafood straight from the source. We bring this product back to Raleigh, where we cut, pack, and sell it through various channels. Whether it be straight to restaurants, through farmers markets or at our namesake restaurant, you are guaranteed to get the freshest product always.

Our Mission

Our mission is simple: sell North Carolina seafood to North Carolinians.

Most North Carolina seafood is shipped up the east coast to northern markets. By creating a market for this seafood inside state lines, we can help instill stability and prosperity to our state’s fisherfolk, oyster farmers, shrimpers, fish houses, and processors. Providing access to North Carolina seafood for North Carolina consumers allows residents to directly benefit from their taxpayer-managed fisheries. This increases demand for North Carolina product across the seafood market, incentivizing coastal professionals to sell more product within their home state.

Our Values


We’ve forged strong personal relationships with the folks who catch, harvest, and process the product we sell. Whether it’s blue crab from Denny R. in Columbia, red drum from O’Neals Fish House in Wanchese, oysters from Adam T. in Core Sound or shrimp from Luke M. in Stumpy Point, these relationships result in a better product for our customers and a shorter supply chain for our seafood.


We know where our product came from, when it came out of the ocean, and how it was caught or harvested. This knowledge enables us to guarantee the freshness and quality of our product. If you ever want to know more about an item’s origin, just ask!


Driving to the coast 3 to 4 times a week means we always have fresh inventory on hand. This product is cut and packed at our cut shop in Raleigh by some of the most experienced fishmongers in the state. Their expertise ensures nothing but the best ends up in our customers’ hands.

Popular Transfer Co. eatery will depart Raleigh food hall for a new headquarters
News & Observer, 2022

Eric Montagne of Locals Seafood talks about seafood sustainability
The Southern Fork Podcast, 2022

Once a Coastal Carolina Staple, Mullet Roe Is Making Waves Again with Local Chefs
Saveur Magazine, February 2022

Locals Oyster Bar expands to Durham
WRAL, 2020

Locals Oyster Bar’s restaurant brings flawlessly fresh seafood to Transfer Co. Food Hall
News & Observer, September 2019

Locals Seafood co-founder repurposes leftover fish scraps for dog treats
CBS 17, August 2019

Locals Seafood Opens Its First Restaurant
Walter Magazine, April 2019

North Carolina Openings
Eater Charleston, January 2019

Things to do in Raleigh
Washington Post, January 2019

Shucking 101
Our State Magazine, November 2018

Seafood market to open inside new Raleigh food hall
Triangle Business Journal, August 2018

Local Fish: Good for you, good for North Carolina
Cary Magazine, March 2018

Marketplace: Locals Seafood
Tradewinds Magazine, Feb/Mar 2018

Sick of Salmon? There Are Plenty More Fish in the Sea.
Indy Week, November 2017

One Fish, Two Fish, Local Fish, Ugly Fish
Indy Week, October 2017

20 Fresh Seafood Markets Across North Carolina
Our State Magazine, November 2016

Can North Carolina’s Local Seafood Movement Help Save its Fishermen
Civil Eats, November 2016

Best Farmers Market Vendor
Indy Week, Best of the Triangle 2015

Sea Change
Cary Living, July/Aug 2015

Shop Local: Locals Seafood
Walter Magazine, March 2015

Fork to Farm Grant Update: Locals Seafood Seizes an Oppor-tuna-ty
Bon Appetit Management, January 2015

Moving Fish: Supply and Demand in North Carolina’s Seafood Industry
NC Sea Grant Coastwatch Magazine, December 2014

The Inland Seafood Shack
Our State Magazine May 2014 see excerpt

N.C. duo takes baby steps into retail, wholesale seafood
Seafood Source, May 2014

Locals Seafood Delivers Fresh Fish Direct from the Coast
Edible Piedmont, March 2014

Home in an Oyster Shell: New Oyster Aquaculture Operations Grow Seed, Take Root
NC Sea Grant Coastwatch Magazine, Winter 2014

Entrepreneurs’ pitch & passion is fresh seafood
News & Observer, August 2013

Mobile Payments Create Opportunity for Small Business
CNBC, November 2011

Gone Fishin’
NC State Alumni Newsletter

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