Marlborough Wine Tours, Marlborough Sounds Cruises, New Zealand


Greenshell Mussels - Frequently Asked Questions.


Greenshell Mussels

Fresh New Zealand Greenshell Mussels (Perna Canaliculus) are a native New Zealand Shellfish.  Found nowere else in the World, these jade shelled beauties are cultivated on longlines throughout the Pelorus and Kenepuru Sounds.   They are easily recognised by their vibrant green and gold shell colouring. The plump tender meat is creamy white when the mussel is male and apricot to orange when the mussel is female.   We challenge you to taste the difference..!!

Freshly Steamed Greenshell Mussel  Fabulous platter of Greenshell Mussels


Quick Facts on Mussels and Mussel Farming in the Marlborough Sounds:

  • There are 485 Mussel Farms in the Marlborough Sounds
  • There are 65,000 tonnes produced per annum (75% of New Zealand's total production)
  • New Zealand Greenshell™Mussels are the single largest seafood export within an export value of NZ $220 million in 2011.

  • New Zealand Greenshell™Mussels can be grown from final seeding to market size in 12 to 18 months.

  • Each three hectare farm would typically have 9 longlines of 110 metres each. Each longline would support 3500 to 4000 metres of crop line.

  • Mussels are filter feeders, meaning they literally filter their food from the sea by pumping the water through their gills. A typical mussel filters 360 litres of water each day.

  • New Zealand Greenshell™Mussels will grow in water temperatures between 12 and 24°C, thriving in most temperatures between 16° to 19°C.

  • Key markets (by value) for Greenshell™ mussels include the United States (28.6%), Australia (9.2%), Korea (8.2%), and Spain (7.1%).

 What does a Mussel Farm look like?

On the surface its a long row of floats but as you get close you can see the dropper ropes which the mussels hold onto.   Its known as suspension culture,  the growing of mussels hanging in the water.



For more information on Greenshell Mussels

For Mussel Cruise Schedule information please click here

For more Mussel Cruise images of the Marlborough Sounds Cruise please click here



Greenshell Mussel Cruise

Jetty 1A, Havelock Marina, Marlborough

Phone +64 3 577 9997

Freephone 0800 99 0800 (Within New Zealand)



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