The GenOrmeau project aims to improve productivity of the ormer (or European abalone) farming industry using genetic selection: 15% to 20% more growth in the first generation and a growth gain of potentially 50% after 4 generations.

This genetic selection programme will incorporate the ‘sustainable’ aspect of production, using robust animals adapted to different farming conditions, such as rearing in tanks or farming organically in the ‘natural’ environment using a seaweed-based feed and no phytosanitary products.

The GenOrmeau project will lead to improvements which are essential for the industry to develop: shorter breeding cycle, lower production costs and reduced risks (storms, disease, etc). There is a real market for the product, particularly given its high-end positioning among French and European (Michelin-starred) restaurant clients.

Improvements in ormer productivity and rearing should also lead to the setting up of new farming businesses and the development of a more sizeable industry. In France, the ormer-farming industry is growing and has established its place as part of the high quality sea produce associated with the region of Brittany.

  • - France Haliotis, Plouguerneau  [Project Developer]
  • - Groix Haliotis, Groix
  • - Huîtres Legris, Plouguerneau
  • - L'Oursine de Ré, île de Ré
Research center
  • - UBO-LEMAR, Brest
Other partners
  • - Association des producteurs d'ormeaux d'élevage, Plouguerneau
  • - SYSAAF, Syndicat des Sélectionneurs Avicoles et Aquacoles Français, Rennes
Fonds Européen pour les Affaires Maritimes et la Pêche (FEAMP)
Overall budget
422 K€