In Aude, Gruissan salt thirsts for notoriety

Will Gruissan salt (Aude) one day join the circle of products protected by a protected geographical indication (PGI), like the Guérande salt (Loire-Atlantique) ? In any case, this is the ambition of Patrice Gabanou, who has been operating 400 ha of salt marshes since 2011.

This son and grandson of a salt worker decided to turn his back this year on the production of road salt in favor of that of food salt, moreover much better valued. Joined by his daughter and son, he explains having “invested 2 million euros in a new processing unit with the support of the Occitanie region and Greater Narbonne. This allows us to currently use 2,000 tonnes of edible salt out of a potential of 12,000 tonnes in the long term. »

“Less salty, sweeter”, according to starred chef Gilles Goujon

The Gruissanais salt producer knows that it will take a few more years beforehope to obtain an IGP. It is up to him to prove that “the quality of the product, the reputation or other characteristics are linked to its geographical origin”, according to the definition of the National Institute of Origin and Quality which came to visit the site. “We particularly highlight the so-called counter-salt harvesting method,” explains Patrice Gabanou. This means that the salt is taken from a first layer and not from the ground. So it does not need to be washed. »

Another specificity, the cold drying technique, “which allows the maximum of trace elements to be preserved”. Whatever happens, the salt worker will be able to count on the support of star chef from Aude Gilles Goujonfrom the Inn of the Old Well, which describes a salt that is “less saline, softer, melting under the tongue”.

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