This year’s scallop season ended on 15th May and figure for the seven-and-a-half-month fishery indicate that 30,000 tonnes of scallops were landed, with an average price of €2.90 per kilo, up 4% on the previous season.
The scallop fishery represents 45% of the turnover of the Normandy fishing fleet, and the stock is judged to be in a strong condition due to rigorous control measures and the long closed season that lasts until the fishery re-opens on 1st October.
Around 300 fishing vessels in Normandy fish for scallops. These are day boats landing live scallops only, and subject to a number of additional restrictions on fishing gears and other factors.
‘Not only is France the biggest market in the world for scallops, but the waters of Normandy are also home to a major stock, making this region the leader,’ said Dimitri Rogoff, President of the Regional Fisheries Committee and Normandie Fraîcheur Mer (NFM)
Apart from a small volumes of scallops caught in the Bay of Biscay, almost all French scallop fishing is split between Brittany, with around on third of landings, and the remaining two thirds is from Normandy.
Normandy scallop are fished from Granville to Le Tréport by vessels from 14 ports, but the prime grounds are the waters east of the Cotentin. In particular, the Seine Bay area, within the 12 nautical mile limit off the Calvados coastline alone represents 70% of the Norman scallop fishery.
‘Our aim is to have the best products and to be in the premium segment of the national market. If a product is not in perfect condition when it’s landed, it will be even less so on the plate. We are a country of gourmets, so we must ensure this product the best possible flavour so that the consumer remembers it,’ Dmitri Rogoff said.