Behind the Scene: A Day In Life Of A Ray Fishmonger

Qwehli cannot possibly be what it is without all the amazing fishmongers. Their expertise is what put the freshest seafood on many renowned restaurant tables. 

Today, we are going to tell the story of our Ray fishmonger!

Meet Sébastien Biolchini — Man of the sea; Born to live through the waves

Spending 12 hrs at sea everyday, Sébastien decided to head out into the water and embrace the ocean spray at the age of 20, with his 11.98 meters gillnet boat The Mestelen, 3 crew members, and his intrepid little dog, Émile.

Becoming a fishmonger was not the career of choice for Sébastien at the beginning, yet his passion for the sea finally pushed him to do what he desires.

"Being a sailor is something you feel in the pit of your stomach. It's a gut feeling and in my nature. You have to be born with the smell of fish in your nose if you want to be able to live with it all your life."

As professional fishmonger, Sébastien spoke highly of Qwehli:

"QWEHLI is a very good alternative to fresh fish. The company supplies high quality product all the way down the line. It's a pleasure to know that our fish will be heading for some of the world's leading restaurants."

It is truly an honor and a pleasure of ours to be recognized by professionals who also share the same value as we do. 

A Day In Life of Sébastien

When asked about what a typical day is like on the sea, Sébastien shed some light on what life is like being a fishmonger.

"It all depends on the time at which the fresh fish is sold at the market. In Audierne, the auction begins at precisely 4 pm, which is why we set out late at the night before or very early in the same morning. We generally leave port at around 3-4 am. It then takes about 1 hour to teach the nets that were set 2 days ago. My job everyday is to keep an eye on everything, which means I have to have "eyes" on the back of my head!

When we are maneuvering, I need to keep the boat stable while staying vigilant on what we're bringing on board. Danger is everywhere on a fishing boat and the sea. The net can easily get caught in the propeller and an injury happens in a snap of time. 

Once all the nets have been raised and reset, we double check on what we've caught and make sure everything is ordinary. Then, we head back to the harbor for the auction to sell the freshly caught fish at the market.

This whole process usually takes 12 hours."

Fun Facts About Sébastien

  • According to Sébastien, back then, many fishmongers didn't know how to swim
  • Today, to become a professional fishmonger, one has to have a swimming certificate
  • If he was a sea creature, Sébastien would like to be a sea mammal, a delicious fish, a lobster, or a mermaid!

We hope you enjoyed the tory of the people behind our fresh seafood. The highest regards to all the amazing fishmongers!

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