These odd-looking critters could provide a sustainable solution to world hunger. Researchers have harnessed the potential of these ‘Naked Clams’, the world’s fastest-growing bivalves, as a new, ecologically sound superfood. They are capable of growing 30cm in just six months by converting waste wood into highly nutritious protein. Naked Clams boast higher levels of Vitamin B12 compared to most other bivalves, nearly doubling the amount found in blue mussels. By introducing an algae-based feed, the clams can also be enriched with omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids, crucial for human health. Historically considered pests for their wood-boring habits, the researchers developed a controlled, fully-enclosed aquaculture system. The modular design allows for use in urban settings, away from the coast – meaning they could solve hunger in cities and according to the scientists “they taste like oysters”. Dr Reuben Shipway at the University of Plymouth’s School of Biological & Marine Sciences, senior author of the report, emphasised the sustainability of eating the animal. “Switching from eating beef burgers to Naked Clam nuggets may well become a fantastic way to reduce your carbon footprint,” he explains.