Bright Shellfish peculiar to Danish waters. Five new stamps introduced to a philatelic use by Denmark Post

January 12th, 2017

Danish waters are home to many species of shellfish. Some are sold for export, while others end up on Danish lunch platters. On the five background images, Denmark Post depicts the entire process from the catch to the fish auction and to serving the shellfish as an appetising hors d’oeuvre. Across the five stamps crawl some of the most common shellfish found in Danish waters: the brown crab, the Norway lobster, the northern prawn, the blue mussel and the European flat oyster. invites our readers to appreciate a fresh and colourful design of this interesting stamp issue!

What is a shellfish?

Shellfish is a term for a wide range of invertebrates which do not necessarily belong to the same zoological family. First and foremost, shellfish are snails and mussels (molluscs) as well as different crustaceans such as crabs, lobsters and prawns. Gastronomically, shellfish is a generic term for crustaceans, molluscs and a few other shelled animals living in either fresh or salt water. For many people, shellfish are a relatively expensive food, and for this reason they are usually served as starters and as small dishes where large quantities are not required.

Popular exports

Denmark has the biggest and most diverse fishing industry in the EU. Yet the Danes themselves do not consume that many shellfish, and as relatively large quantities are caught, most are exported. Many of the shellfish are sold to countries around the Mediterranean, where they are regarded as special delicacies. This applies, for example, to the brown crab.

Pick an oyster

The Wadden Sea is home to tonnes and tonnes of oysters, and hunting for them in the seabed is an experience in itself. On the islands of Fanø and Rømø, you can go on oyster safaris that are organised when the tide recedes to reveal the shallow banks in the Wadden Sea.

On the ebb tide, the large oyster banks appear, where you can fill your buckets with oysters and mussels ad infinitum. It is the introduced Pacific cupped oyster which you find in the Wadden Sea. One of the world’s largest natural, wild stocks of the original European flat oyster can be found in the Limfjord, which is why it is also known as the Limfjord oyster. The European flat oyster is a great delicacy, with firm meat and an intense mineral taste, which varies depending on the time of year. All this makes the European flat oyster a unique and special delicacy which Danes treasure and love.