The oyster is a bivalve mollusc with a soft body protected by 2 shells; living on a hard substrate, this hermetic protection is essential to its survival. It feeds by filtering seawater and extracting microalgae called phytoplankton.
Oyster farming takes 2 to 4 years for them to reach the market size of 30 grams. In France, hollow and flat oysters are marketed and can be sold certified according to their place of production - for example: PGI (protected geographical indication) or for a particular taste: Label Rouge.
In summer, oysters that are hermaphrodites (sex changes according to the seasons to ensure their survival) will reproduce. After a few weeks of drifting with the currents, the oyster larvae develops and attaches itself to a support. When the larva is hooked, it turns into the spat.
Oysters can be eaten raw or cooked ,and seasoned according to your taste. Amateurs love them naturally to preserve their original iodine flavour.
Just before eating it, it is important to make sure that the oyster is alive. The shell must be closed and once opened, it must react to any external stimulation. It is possible to store them, closed large shell down, between 5 and 15 °C, for 1 week to 10 days.
Depending on their weight, there are differents sizes. The smaller the rate, the bigger the oyster: