Portonovo Wild Mussel

Slow Food Presidium

Italy

Marche

Fish, sea food and fish products

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Portonovo Wild Mussel

Around Ancona, mussels that reproduce naturally and live attached to underwater rocks off the Conero coast are known as “moscioli”. The local trattorias made them famous in the 1950s, and the mollusks began to be harvested on a large scale by small fishing boats with the help of divers. During the following two decades, there were around 80 active boats along the Conero coast, 30 of which belonged to the Portonovo fishing cooperative. Eventually, difficulties in harvesting the mussels and competition from farmed mollusks led to a steep fall in production. The number of divers willing to do this type of work also fell steeply.

Season

Mussel harvest is from May to October

Notice

Presidium fishermen have postponed the start of the muscioli harvest, which would normally begin in mid-May and last until the end of October, until next June 15.

This was a strong decision, made in common agreement between the Portonovo Fishermen's Cooperative and the other fishing cooperatives working in the waters of the Portonovo promontory.

Indispensable to protect the survival of the species, which has been put at risk by climate change: higher water temperatures weaken the byssus thread that binds the mussels to the rocks, causing them to detach. Illegal fishing, which plunders mussels in the fishing area, also takes away large quantities of mussels.

Until June 15, it will not be possible to find Presidium wild mussels on the market or in restaurants: any availability is considered a sign of irresponsible fishing.

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By now, wild mussels are only gathered along a few stretches of the Italian coastline. The Presidium fishers have done a lot of work on the supply chain to guarantee their mussels come from permitted fishing zones, are traceable throughout the distribution chain and, most importantly, the equilibrium between catch quantities and reproduction capacity ensures that the mussel population is given time to regenerate.

Production area
The stretch of coast from Pietralacroce to the border between Sirolo and Numana, with Portonovo Bay in the middle, Ancona Province

Presidium supported by
Ancona Province, Ancona Municipality

Producers

Cooperativa fra Pescatori Portonovo
Frazione Poggio, 64
Ancona
Tel. +39 338 7242375
portonovopesca@alice.it
www.portonovopesca.com
(riferimento Paolo Monaco)

Marche Food Agenzia
di Samuele Piersantelli
Via Augusto Tamburini, 4
Ancona
Tel. +39 347 6702731
marchefoodagenzia@gmail.com
Slow Food Presidium Producers’ Coordinator
Sandro Rocchetti
Tel. +39 338 7242375
portonovopesca@alice.it

By now, wild mussels are only gathered along a few stretches of the Italian coastline. The Presidium fishers have done a lot of work on the supply chain to guarantee their mussels come from permitted fishing zones, are traceable throughout the distribution chain and, most importantly, the equilibrium between catch quantities and reproduction capacity ensures that the mussel population is given time to regenerate.

Production area
The stretch of coast from Pietralacroce to the border between Sirolo and Numana, with Portonovo Bay in the middle, Ancona Province

Presidium supported by
Ancona Province, Ancona Municipality

Producers

Cooperativa fra Pescatori Portonovo
Frazione Poggio, 64
Ancona
Tel. +39 338 7242375
portonovopesca@alice.it
www.portonovopesca.com
(riferimento Paolo Monaco)

Marche Food Agenzia
di Samuele Piersantelli
Via Augusto Tamburini, 4
Ancona
Tel. +39 347 6702731
marchefoodagenzia@gmail.com
Slow Food Presidium Producers’ Coordinator
Sandro Rocchetti
Tel. +39 338 7242375
portonovopesca@alice.it

Territory

StateItaly
RegionMarche