Scallops are harvested and farmed all over the world, in different ways. Sometimes you see a term used in a fish market and you don't know what to make of it. Here are a few:
Dredged scallops: Most of the scallops we get in New England come from scallop dredgers. This is probably the most destructive method of getting them. Chain nets are scraped along the seafloor, scooping up scallops and anything else that doesn't escape or pass through the mesh. Scallop dredgers may stay at sea for days, storing harvested scallops onboard while they are sorted and more are harvested. Dredged scallops can be gritty and may have been at sea for days since they were caught.
Day-Boat Scallops: Day-boat scallops are dredged in the same destructive fashion, but the boats go out and return in the same day, so the scallops are fresher.
Farmed Scallops: Many scallops are farmed in nets suspended in moving water. This is considered sustainable aquaculture. It produces a quality product with little impact in the local environment, and no need for chemicals or drugs. Farmed scallops are not gritty. Scallops are farmed locally by Taylor Bay Scallops.
Diver Scallops: Diver scallops are harvested by hand by a SCUBA diver. The diver hand picks the biggest scallops in the best scallop-growing areas, those with swift currents. Because of the labor-intensive process and the skill and training required, diver scallops command a premium price, but there are always people willing to pay it.