Snails business in Ukraine is developing rapidly. Over the past four years, export of the product produced by Ukrainian farms has quadrupled. At the same time, such activity remains profitable and in demand — supply on the market does not cover demand and, according to experts, will not cover in the next 10 years.
An interesting fact: today only 15-20% of snails on the market are grown on a farm, the rest is collected in the nature. But it`s known that the meat of wild snails is less tasty, and in some European countries collection is completely prohibited. How farms achieve a high quality product, read below.
Description of the basic organization of the farm
Important! In the climate of Ukraine, the combination of two breeding types is most often used. Ukrainian farms — combined type.
In nature, mollusks live in places with increased vegetation and humidity. They hide under the leaves and in the soil in forests, fields and near water. They live by such an annual cycle:
- in spring, when the thaw begins they mate and lay eggs;
- in summer they live on the surface;
- closer to winter, they bury 10 cm deep into the soil and hibernate.
At farms they try to provide creatures with conditions that are as similar as possible to natural ones, but at the same time protect them from the dangers that exist in nature:
- the fields where is arranged the open part of the farm are fenced;
- for the convenience of moving snails, they cover the paths with wooden pallets;
- individual enclosures are installed in the rooms, they are covered with calcined soil and plants are planted.
Important! The two main dangers of snails in nature are predators and diseases. Initially helps isolation of the farm. The fence doesn`t miss the hedgehogs, snakes and other small predators. Careful monitoring of the conditions and nutrition of individuals helps to avoid diseases.
Snails are unpretentious in care: they even eat the same things as they crawl ( leaves and soil), but at the same time their normal life activity is possible only in case of optimal living conditions, which are quite strict:
- humidity 85-90%;
- temperature 20-25 degrees Celsius;
- lack of direct sunlight.
These conditions are necessary for the life and reproduction of adult mature individuals. For the new generation (eggs and young snails) conditions are slightly different:
- temperature of 17 degrees Celsius;
- other parameters are similar to the requirements in the previous list.
In order for the mollusks to be healthy, humidity and temperature must be monitored. For this, measuring instruments are used. To adjust the value, additional equipment is also used:
- heating system;
- air dryer.
- water supply system;
- ventilation system.
The water supply system automates the supply of water to the farm. So that it must be regularly updated to snails aren`t sick.
The ventilation system allows you to strengthen the protection of mollusks from diseases — clean air has a good effect on their livelihoods.
There are other points related to the characteristics of the life of snails. So when creatures lay eggs they move it into separate cages.
Arrangement of farm premises for product processing
When young snails grow they can be put up for sale. But before that, it’s important to process the goods. On the market they sell both live and cooked shellfish, as well as additional products of production.
Creatures are collected by hand. Then they are washed and either put up for sale or transferred to cooks. Additional production products include:
- mucin (secretion or snail mucus);
- snail caviar.
Snail eggs are also harvested and even washed by hand. This is a very fragile product, that`s why it`s sold at a very high cost. Mucin is harvested using special technology so that only a clean and healthy product comes on sale. Separate rooms with appropriate equipment should be prepared for these processes on the farm.