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Posted by portugalpress on November 01, 2017

Ostras da Torre, a Tavira-based oyster farming company, expects to produce around 40 tons of “quality oysters” this year, most of which will be exported to Spain and France just in time for Christmas.

The company is led by António Mota and Pedro Gois, two electrical engineers who have been friends since they were students and decided in 2014 to put an old family oyster farm to use and start their own business.

“We have known each other since university. We finished our course together and worked together in the same company. We wanted to start a new project that was profitable,” Gois told Barlavento newspaper.

The oysters are farmed in Torre d’Aires (Tavira), a beautiful area of the Ria Formosa estuary.

Currently, the company has nearly three million ‘Japanese oysters’ (Magallana gigas) growing in a 10,700sqm area.

According to Gois, there are plans to start farming the so-called Portuguese oyster (Crassostrea angulata) as well.

“We have even been in contact with biologists from the University of the Algarve who are developing a nursery project at Quatro Águas de Tavira,” he told the paper.

Gois says the company has invested over €150,000 since it was launched.

“We even have a surveillance system, which allows us to control what goes on at the farm at day or nighttime.

“It has saved us a lot of heartache. It has a discouraging effect, as the oysters of our neighbours are always being stolen,” he added.

But it wasn’t just a financial investment that was needed from the company’s dynamic duo. Nearly every day they have their hands in the water, making sure their oysters are growing according to plan.

“It’s a hard job and it is difficult to find workers,” he said, citing a number of bad experiences.

President Marcelo – a “Torre d’Aires oyster fan”

One of the most notable fans of the Torre d’Aires oysters is President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa.

The duo travelled to Quinta do Lago in their first year of production while the president was on holiday in the Algarve.

“We spoke to his head of security who liked the idea and let us talk to the president, who explained to us how the delivery should be made.”

Ever since, the company delivers a batch of oysters to the president every time he is in the region.

Photos: BRUNO FILIPE PIRES/OPEN MEDIA GROUP

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