If you want to buy escargot, you will want to know about the various options. The most common species is Helix pomatia, otherwise known as the Burgundy Snail. While most escargot products are labeled as French, in reality, the snails are collected in the wild in Eastern Europe where they are more plentiful and labor is cheaper. Our Helix lucorum are noticeably larger and lighter in color and highly prized as a food, but it is difficult to cultivate and rarely farmed commercially. A classic delicacy, these extra large grey escargots make for a wonderful appetizer and sophisticated statement when entertaining at home.
Suggestions: Buy Escargot that suits your use. For traditional escargot in their shell with maitre d’hotel butter (shallot butter), consider White Toque’s French Escargot In-Shell Frozen (authentic wild Helix Snails) that is all ready to heat and serve.
About Burgundy Snails
In the 1800’s, early settlers introduced the Burgundy Snail to California. Since then, these snails have become an invasive species. Pesticides are used to kill the snails on conventional farms, whereas Organic Farms collect them by hand. This infestation costs millions of dollars of crop damage each year. Simultaneously, the US imports annually around $20 million of Burgundy Snails, which are collected in Eastern Europe and packaged in France.
We would like to see the USDA create a path for the Burgundy Snails in California to enter our food system safely and legally. Unfortunately, at this time, it would be illegal to collect snails on an Organic Farm and sell them for food.