The traces of empty shells of snails, found in the caves of ancient people, demonstrate the interest to these mollusks in the ancient times. People from the Ancient Rome and Greece consumed them; however, the demand for the dishes, cooked from escargot, has recently increased.
Approximately 420-450 thousand tons of snails, which cost $ 12 billion, are annually delivered to the market. China is a leading country, while Europeans take the second place for snails’ consumption. Snails are also popular in Greece, Belgium and Romania.
Baltic countries, including Belarus and Ukraine were not gourmets of this meat, however, snails have recently become consumed here.
The past four years witnessed an incredible demand for snails. in 2013 the Ukrainians consumed 3 tons of mollusk, while this number was 360 tons in 2017. Such a popularity is explained by the interest to European cuisine.
The most exquisite dishes from snails came from France. French cooks use snails meat as an ingredient in salads, soups and as a separate dish in stewed and fried form. Escargot is the most famous delicacy. The most popular recipes are in Burgundy, Dijon, Limousine, which are named after the regions in France. The basis of escargot is a creamy sauce, with an addition of differnet ingredients.
Escargot is included in the menu of many restaurants in Spain. Paella is the most famous Spanish dish from snails. Moreover, they are consumed as an independent snack.
When tourists are visiting the island of Elba, they must try snails in tomato sauce. It is necessary to remember that snails are added with spicy herbs, which are a national attribute of the Italian national cuisine.
In the period of the World War II, the soldiers from the Japanese army tried Achatina giant snails, found in the South Pacific. Later they brought these snails to Japan, where they have become very popular. Japanese farmers started growing these snails in the farms. They become used in the medicine as the best cure from tuberculosis.
The Akchatines were distributed to other countries for breeding; however, tropical climate is the best for them.
In the climatic conditions of Ukraine, these snails are artificially grown. They comprise the biggest share of the market.
The most widely spread territory is western Ukraine, where they can be met in natural conditions. Then, Akhatinas are exported to the Baltic countries, france, Italy and Spain.
Ukrainian snail farms work on the domestic market. The products are delivered to restaurants, supermarkets and companies, producing frozen convenience foods. The snails are also used in the pharmaceutical and beauty factories, where they are included in anti-aging creams and therapeutic ointments based on snail mucus.
Due to an ever-growing popularity of snails, the demand in the market surpasses the supply. It promotes further development of the industry, where Ukraine might become a leader.