Friday, March 19, 2010

Friend of the Sea Certifies Mont Saint Michel Bay Mussels

The Mont Saint Michel Bay ‘bouchot’ mussels, pride of French cuisine, can now claim also the sustainability of their culture method. The certification followed an independent audit of compliance to Friend of the Sea strict requirements.

The culture method dates back to the XIII Century when Patrick Walton, an Irish traveler said to have been shipwrecked on the Mont Saint Michel Bay, accidentally discovered mussels’ propensity to aggregate on ropes and fatten remarkably . The culture method was named by a combination of two words in the Irish of the time: Bout=fence, Chot=Wood.

The traditional French ‘bouchot’ method of mussel culture is carried out on wooden poles that are placed upright into the sea bed in the low inter-tidal region. Mussel spat can be mechanically loaded into a long“stocking” of natural fibre that can then be wound around the bouchot. As the stocking fibre rots, the mussels attach by byssus to the bouchot.

Trad’Océan mussels are sold with the Friend of the Sea ecolabel by the Swiss company Covedis and Swiss retail chain Manor. “This recognition is an additional confirmation of the natural origin and high quality of our mussels” comments Mr Le Bihan, director of Trad’Ocean “

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