Galicia, Convergence Region situated in the North-West of Spain, is a leader region in European and Spanish shellfish aquaculture. More than 3,300 rafts dedicated to mussel culture produce about 250,000 tons of mussels each year (212.030.271 kg in 2010). The Galician mussel production in 2009 represented 97% of Spanish production of bivalve mollusks. The Galician mussel farming is a natural form of food production that takes place in the open natural environment. The Galician mussel is held by approximately 2,400 small family businesses, which generate 7,000 direct jobs and another 8,000 inducing indirect jobs. Moreover, only the first sale turnover of these mussels amounted to 86,625,095 Euros in 2010.
Angeles Longa Portabales began her research experience in 1991 in the Agro biological Institute-CSIC (Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation), where she worked in Physiology. On 1993 she moved to the Marine Research Center (Xunta de Galicia, Spain), where she worked as scholarship in Pathology of Bivalves. In July of 1998 she obtained the degree of PhD with her thesis about Genetic of Fish. Between 1999 and 2001 she worked for CRMG training to mussel producers in topics as: HABs, marine environment and contamination... From September of 2001 she directs the R & D department of the CRMG that aims to bring major improvements to the culture, processes and marketing of "Mexillón de Galicia". To do this, in recent years, among other activities, the laboratory CRMG has developed several national and European research projects on topics on mollusc waste management, identification and authentication of mussels and various aspects related to food safety of bivalves (toxins, intensive purification systems...). In addition, Angeles, sometimes as representative of CRMG, has participated in different events: training programs, national and international forums, etc, she has served an active part in various institutions: European Mollusc Producers Association (AEPM/EMPA), European Advisory Committee on Fisheries and Aquaculture (ACFA), Junta Asesora de Cultivos Marinos (JACUMAR), etc.
Alfonso Alcaide Nuñez is graduated in Economics from the University of Vigo. He has a long experience in the Galician mussel sector since he held various positions in several organizations and companies. For 4 years he was professor at the Instituto Galego de Formación en Acuicultura-IGAFA (Xunta de Galicia) and he also participated as a visiting professor at the Graduate Specialization Course on Fisheries Economics (Universidade de Santiago de Compostela). Between 1999 and 2007 Alfonso was part of the Pleno of Consello Regulador Mexillón de Galicia (CRMG) as a founding member and now he continues to develop your work as an economist in the CRMG. Also during these years, Alfonso has participated as economist in several national and European research projects and he collaborated with the Business School CaixaNova in the study of the mussel activity impact in the Galicia local development. He was vice-president of the European Mollusc Producers Association (AEPM/EMPA) and he has participated in different institutions: European Advisory Committee on Fisheries and Aquaculture (ACFA), Junta Asesora de Cultivos Marinos (JACUMAR), Consejo Económico y Social de España-CES, Consello Galego da Pesca, and some others.