Genetically 'improved' oysters 'behind France's shellfish plague'

Last month farmers around France announced that they had lost between 40 and 100 per cent of their oysters aged one to two years old.

According to oysters farmers cited by weekly magazine Marianne, the culprit is the triploid oyster, which is modified to give it three pairs of chromosomes instead of two, as is the case with common oysters.

"It's the triploid's fault", one was quoted as saying. "But one mustn't say that because the scientific and financial stakes are considerable".

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