‘Mussels Oysters Clams’ is a sustainable recipe book I designed, illustrated and partly wrote after discovering that incorporating these shellfish into your diet is not only good for your health but also the planet. Here is a quick flick through it!
I sourced sustainable paper in three different textures and finishes to echo shells of the mussels, oysters and clams. For the cover I selected a rough textured paper which is followed by a pearlescent paper to imitate the inside of the shell. For the pages I chose a mottled recycled paper that I felt had a sandy look to it.
Mussels, oysters and clams are filter feeders – not a lovely name but don’t be daunted! – meaning they purify whatever water they are in by eating phytoplankton, algae and detritus; in other words, the sea’s rubbish. They don’t require any other supplements to their diets like other fish which usually comes from unsustainable sources. They could be seen as the most environmentally sound animal species group. They have a minimal ecological impact as well as being carbon capturers, like trees; their shells are made up of calcium carbonate, so they suck up our carbon emissions in order to build their shells, where it is then stored indefinitely. If you are wondering how much carbon they can absorb here are a couple statistics for you. 1km2 of farmed mussels could capture 218 tonnes of carbon which is the equivalent of the emissions of a plain ride to New York! If we turned ¼ of the UK’s waters over to mussel farming they would draw down about 1/8 of our total carbon emissions. Impressive, huh?
The book would come in a sustainable net bag with an oyster knife, tea towel and apron.