Some Chinese customers believe eating geoduck boosts testosterone. To fetch top-dollar in Asia, the clams must remain healthy enough during transport to be sold live. After arriving at L & C Seafood with a truckload of geoduck, Peterson's product is moved quickly into a small temperature-controlled room. Ideally, geoducks will go through this packaging process in the afternoon and be on their way to Asia aboard a jet by that evening. Each of the clams is held shut by a rubber band and kept at around 45 degrees with ice gel inserts in a cooler. Retail prices in China are currently closer to the $20 a pound mark, Peterson said. In years past, there were reports of prices climbing to $100 a pound or more during peak demand times such as Chinese New Year. Profits from Washington geoduck exports have jumped 63 percent since 2004, according to the state Department of Agriculture. McHugh, the Tulalip shellfish program manager, attributes that to China's middle class growing, making geoduck a more affordable splurge. “It's turned into ‘roast beef' for the middle class,” he said.