Oysters and Picpoul: the winners of the General Competition were honored in Mèze

Oysters and Picpoul: the winners of the General Competition were honored in Mèze

L'ensemble des récipiendaires avec leurs diplômes officiels. Midi Libre – PHILIPPE MALRIC

Les ostréiculteurs du bassin méditerranéen et viticulteurs de Picpoul de Pinet médaillés au Concours général agricole ont été honorés lors d'une cérémonie commune jeudi 14 mars à Mèze.

As one does not go without the other (and vice versa), the producers of oysters and Picpoul de Pinet, recent medalists at the Concours général agricole  during the Salon de l' #39;agriculture, were jointly and traditionally honored Thursday March 14 in the old – but still superb – cooperative cellar of Mèze.

The special status of Mèze

A town "which is the only one to produce picpoul but also oysters and which has the largest shellfish port in Mediterranean", as Patrice Lafont, president of the CRCM (Mediterranean Regional Shellfish Culture Committee), pointed out. And in this Olympic year, the boss of shellfish farmers uses a quote from Pierre-de-Coubertin: "see far, speak frank, act firm".

A "historic" for oysters

"Seeing far, it's the bet taken since 2020 to capitalize on the results in the General Competition. In 2014, we only had two medalists. Ten years later we are at 16.  This is a historic record. "Speak straight" it was to launch this dynamic which allowed four of our production areas to win medals. And finally “act strong” is the launch of the umbrella brand Mediterranean Oysters Raised on Ropes. Our production is typical, atypical and charismatic"he concluded, not without emphasizing that in the field of flat oysters – judged at the national level and not by sector – local production had won four medals out of six.

A strong association

"We are in civil partnership with each other", Olivier Azan will comment for the Picpoul appellation. "It is important to continue working together". "Oysters and Picpoul mark the high gastronomic value of the South of France. These two products are very appreciated locally, nationally and internationally", launched Thierry Baëza, the mayor of Mèze in his introductory remarks.

Thirty diplomas awarded

Then in turn, François Commeinhes, president of the agglomeration, Guillaume Raymond, sub-prefect in charge of the coast who remembered having in his youth "did the harvest before going to prepare platters of oysters in a restaurant, as if I was predestined to occupy these positions here", Yvon Pellet for the Department and Christophe Manas for the Region presented official diplomas to each of the 16 oyster farmers and 14 award-winning winegrowers near Paris. Before the guests tastefully check the perfect harmony between the shellfish and the product of the local vines which were distinguished in the General Competition.

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