Where do Amélie oysters come from ?

Our oysters Amélie are bred and selected in Marennes-Oléron (France), the cradle of oysters since roman times. The great families of the empire brought them in at great expense for their banquets.

Like wine, oysters take on unique properties depending on the environment they’re grown in – their own unique “merroir”. Amélie has its own exclusive “merroir”.

Bourcefranc-le-Chapus, an oyster farming town

Economic activity has always been oriented towards the sea. Formerly the inhabitants were salt workers and fishermen, today they are sailors and oyster farmers.

Pointe du Chapus has a port used by oyster farmers and a small fleet of trawlers.

The old SNCF station (restored in 2004) testifies to the importance of the oyster farming and tourist traffic that it experienced until 1970 with the Paris Austerlitz-Le Chapus line. A second station existed in the center of the town as the quantity of oysters to be shipped was large, especially during the end of year celebrations. Today, trucks are replacing the train via the seafood product transit platform inaugurated in 2003.

Bourcefranc-Le Chapus is the leading oyster port in the Marennes-Oléron basin, by the number of registered maritime oyster farmers.  This is why the town has a renowned establishment, the Lycée Aquacole de la Mer et du Littoral, where its students can prepare the traditional baccalaureates but above all the certificates of technicians related to maritime activities.

How to open an oyster

For those who are passionate about seafood, oysters are, without a doubt, one of the best delicacies that the sea provides us. But, at the same time, it is also one of the most ‘problematic’ when it comes to serving at the table. The reason? The eternal fight to open them correctly. And it is that, the fresher they are, the more they ‘resist’. Here are some tips to avoid taking a finger in the attempt.

The benefits of the oyster

Did you know that in addition to being an eco-friendly food, the oyster has endless benefits for the human body? Find out which are the main ones below:

  1. Improve cardiovascular health

Omega 3 fatty acids are essential for the proper functioning of the cardiovascular system, to protect older people from degenerative diseases of the nervous system, to combat aging and have a very important anti-inflammatory and antithrombotic effect. The body cannot generate omega 3 and therefore we have to obtain it through the diet. Oysters are rich in omega 3, their intake lowers triglycerides in the blood, as well as levels of bad cholesterol (LDL), which is essential to prevent heart problems and against arteriosclerosis. In addition, the high content of potassium and magnesium help reduce blood pressure, relax blood vessels, improve blood circulation and oxygenation.

  1. Fight and prevent anemia

This shellfish is an excellent source of iron, as it provides more than 90% of the daily needs in each serving. Iron is a key component in the formation of red blood cells and is the main defense against iron deficiency anemia which causes fatigue, cognitive dysfunction, stomach disorders and muscle weakness. The amount of vitamin C in oysters improves its bioavailability; and copper helps form hemoglobin and store iron in the body. In addition, vitamin B 12 participates in the maturation process of red blood cells and helps prevent megaloblastic anemia, when red blood cells are larger than normal. In turn, iron helps the body transport oxygen to individual cells increasing our energy.

  1. They strengthen the immune system

Eating oysters boosts the immune system due to its high content of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. They are an extraordinary source of vitamin B 12 (cobalamin), essential to preserve the health of nerves, cells and the heart, as well as to prevent dementia. The content of vitamin B2, riboflavin, vitamin C, vitamin B3 and vitamin A is also very important. They are very powerful antioxidants due to the presence of vitamin C and minerals such as copper and selenium, which help defend against free radicals and prevent heart disease and premature aging of the body. On the other hand, its content in ceramides and minerals protects against different types of cancer.

They are very rich in zinc and selenium. One oyster provides just over half of your daily zinc and selenium needs. Zinc is the second most abundant trace element in the body, a necessary mineral in many metabolic processes, is involved in protein and insulin synthesis, is crucial for the immune system, and helps speed wound healing. Selenium protects from free radicals and reduces the risk of inflammation.

  1. They increase bone density.

They have a high content of minerals calcium, phosphorus, zinc, iron, copper and selenium, which contributes to increase bone density, as well as the strength and durability of bones, protecting against diseases such as osteoporosis.

  1. They promote muscle growth.

They are a great source of complete proteins since they provide all the essential amino acids, proteins participate.  In the construction and repair of muscle tissue, they regulate cell activity and form enzymes, among many other properties. Its zinc content promotes the production of anabolic androgenic hormones such as testosterone, which is vital for muscle growth.

6 . Aphrodisiac food

Oysters may increase sexual performance, as some research suggests that their high zinc content promotes increased release of sex hormones. They can also help increase the number and mobility of sperm.

7 . They regulate the thyroid. Selenium and zinc contribute to the proper functioning of thyroid hormones. It is also an important source of iodine, since a single oyster has the 6% necessary for the proper functioning of the thyroid gland, regulates the metabolic rate of the body and the growth and development of the fetus. They are beneficial for our metabolism, regulating our energy level and the proper functioning of cells.

How to preserve oysters

First and foremost, is the temperature/humidity relationship. Oysters should be stored between 4º and 8º, the temperature of our refrigerators, but they must be hydrated in a bed of crushed ice to conserve the moisture they need, since the dry cold of the refrigerator would dehydrate them so much that they could die.

Let’s remember that the oyster is alive, so we should never freeze it.

The second aspect is the position in which they are placed. We must always store the oysters at home with the concave shell downwards, so that they themselves can retain the water inside and arrive in optimal conditions at our table with all their flavor and texture.

The best container is the original box with which we send them home ourselves. We have designed this box of poplar wood and chestnut shavings that retain large volumes of moisture and drain excess liquid if necessary. And we complete it with thermo-intelligent paper that maintains the right temperature.

The way to optimize the conservation of the Amélie oysters, in the event that we open the box, we must close it again with an elastic band and its lid, to put a weight on the upper part that exerts pressure.

By following these simple tips we can keep oysters for up to 10 days at home. So we can plan the purchase in advance and ensure that we will serve our guests the best oysters in the best conditions.