Scallops are some of the most treasured sushi delicacies. Hotate (scallop) is a large bivalve that has a rich, sweet taste and soft consistency.
In the world of sushi, scallops are usually eaten raw, often butterfly cut down the middle and served with rice, as nigirizushi. It's not unheard of to lightly sear the scallops as well, as it can bring out the natural seeetness.
The large Hokkaido scallops are generally the most sought after in the sushi world. Sushi chefs prefer the large scallops from Hokkaido for sushi and sashimi, although bay scallops are commonly used in hot dishes.
Most of the scallops sold in the US come from suspension farming operations in China. Hanging the scallops is the preferrerd method of farming, as it requires no damage be done to the bottom when harvesting. Farming bivalves by hanging nets with them is generally regarded as environmentally friendly, since filter-feeders extract nutrients from the surrounding waters.