How bad is lobster meat

Pain-free death: "Anesthetizing the lobsters will be too expensive"


Crayfish like lobsters are now only allowed to land in the saucepan in a stunned state. Restaurateurs are not pleased.

Lobster meat is undisputedly a delicacy among connoisseurs. But: the crustaceans often have to suffer in order for people to enjoy their palate. They are cooked alive in many kitchens and can take a few minutes to die. Now the federal government has decided: lobsters and co. Must be anesthetized again before cooking in the saucepan.

The Federal Food Safety and Veterinary Office communicated this on Monday. According to animal welfare organizations, it is possible to stun animals with electric shocks. But that makes additional technology necessary in the kitchen. Some restaurateurs do not go down well with the new regulation. Srecko Witschi, Managing Director of the Prime Steakhouse in Zurich, says: "These increased protective conditions are a joke." He does not yet know how he will implement the new regulations. "But reorganizing the kitchen is going to be time-consuming."

"I will now have to stop offering lobster"

Restaurant owners in western Switzerland are also not enjoying the new regulation. So Nicolas Toussaint from the Auberge Hauterive in the canton of Neuchâtel. Stunning animals before cooking is not an option for him. That'll be too expensive. “Obtaining the technology for electric shocks is an additional, costly investment. I'll have to stop offering lobster on my menu, ”he regrets. Because: He doesn't want to prepare frozen lobsters: “Crustaceans are very delicate. If they are killed and frozen, their meat dries out and the texture becomes limp. "

"Our lobsters are killed immediately after they are caught"

Live lobsters are also on the menu in the Zurich lobster & oyster bar. Chef Patrick Schmutz: “The fact that the crustacean is fresh and does not arrive in my kitchen frozen is essential for the taste. We don't want to prepare Findus menus here, ”says the boss.

Mike Berchtold, managing director of Braschler's Comestibles Import, supplies restaurants with the delicacy every day. He sees things differently: “For the sake of animal welfare, we have not offered any live lobsters for around four years. The lobsters that we deliver to our customers are killed on site, immediately after they are caught. "

The lobsters suffer most during transport

He also counts restaurants with 17 or 18 Gault Millau points among his customers. “If you defrost the crabs professionally and prepare them specially, or if you don't cook them but heat them up in a Holdomat (a heating oven), you hardly notice any difference in taste. In addition, you usually always serve a sauce or a sauce froth with lobster anyway. "

The new regulation for the Fair Fish organization is a step in the right direction. Co-Managing Director Martin Orgler: "These provisions are better than nothing." But he points out: “The brief killing is less bad than the time before it. Because the animals are often transported and stored for months with tied scissors and without food. A bad ordeal. " Therefore, in his opinion, there should be no import of live crayfish at all.

Animal rights activists have long criticized the preparation of lobsters. Killing in boiling water is, in their opinion, brutal and painful for the crustacean. See more in the video: