More information

Common periwinkle

Quality mark Cultivation
/Keurmerk Wild
Second choice
Informatie over vissoort
Lees meer


Shellfish is a culinary term that is often used for several species of molluscs, gastropods, bivalves and arthropods. Some examples are the St. James shell, mussels, razor clams, oysters, cockles and whelks. Most shellfish live partly or fully buried into the seabed, mostly in sandy or gravelly bottoms. They feed by filtering nutrients out of the water. Seed and eggs are released into the water and fertilized externally. Most shellfish are hermaphroditic, they can be both male and female. There are many different shellfish species in the North Sea that are very much suitable for consumption. Fishing methods on shellfish include hand-picking, dredging or mechanic dredges (suckers).


Common periwinkle

The common periwinkle or winkle is very common along the Dutch shores. This species is native to the rocky intertidal zone along the north-eastern shores of the Atlantic Ocean. It is also a common species along the shores of the north-western Atlantic Ocean where it was introduced by ballast water. This species is a sea snail or whelk of a few centimetres. Its shell has a strong small bulb at the end, is dark coloured and sometimes banded. The common periwinkle is being hand-picked along the high water line.


Common periwinkle

Littorina littorea

Atlantic Ocean, north-east (FAO 27)

Farming- / Catch method


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Fish stocks and fishing pressure
Ecosystem effects
Fishery management
Final assessment
Explanation assessment

Common periwinkles are a fast-growing species that are not very affected by fishing pressure. Little information is available on the effects of fishing on this species, but common periwinkles are not expected to be very vulnerable. The section fish stocks and fishing pressure receives an orange score.

Hand collecting common periwinkles is a fishing method where bycatchBycatch:
Species caught next to species targeted for fishery. By-catches can consist of non-commercial species and species that are too small, and can be kept (this part is sometimes called by-product) or thrown back into the sea (discards). 
is virtually non-existent. If an unwanted species is caught, it can be discarded with a high survival rate. The ecosystem effects of removing periwinkles from the sea have not been studied but are expected to be low. For this reason, this section scores green.

There is a management plan for this species that is partially effective. This is due to the lack of specific management for this local fishery, a lack of data and possible risks of illegal fishing (also known as IUU). The management sectionscores orange.

The final assessment for this species is green, meaning you can eat this species without any concern.

Fish in season

Fish in season is the best quality at that time because the spawning period is over.


ASC label

Fish with the ASC label is farmed in a sustainable manner.

MSC label

Fish with the MSC label is caught sustainably.

Good fish

This fish is not being overfished or is being responsibly farmed, with minimal impact on the environment.

Second choice

This fish is a second choice. There are still some improvements to be made in this fishery or fish farm.


Do not buy this fish. It's being overfished or the way it's farmed or caught has a negative impact on the environment.


This fish is unwillingly caught while fishing for a different species. They are underused and should be eaten more.


GlobalG.A.P. certified farms are doing a step in the right direction in terms of sustainability. A few species with this label are getting a better score on the VISwijzer.


Organic standards are the strictest when it comes to fish feed. They also require certain measures for animal well-being.

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