Fresh fish caught using responsible, high-quality fishing methods, this is the Cactus motto for its entire range of fresh sea products. Michel Gallo, Cactus Fish Products Manager, works tirelessly to guarantee his customers quality and satisfaction. A professional in this sector for 23 years, he shares with us his passion for his work:
How did you become an expert in your field of work? How long have you been working in the fish business?
I started my professional career in 1995 with Cactus, and since 1997 I’ve been a fish buyer. I’ve actually learnt my trade through experience: I’ve travelled for work many times to the areas where our fish come from, I’ve visited lots of suppliers, I’ve spoken to experts, I’ve been out to sea with fishermen, I’ve watched how they work, I’ve been on training courses, but I’ve also spent lots of time cooking so that I could really get to know my products inside out.
What is your passion for your work?
Working in this area is only possible if you are really passionate about the products. No one day is like the next, you always learn something new. Also, in this profession, interpersonal skills are very important. Buying good fresh fish from a fishmonger isn’t simply a matter of course. There are all sorts of factors to consider such as the weather, fishing methods, price, but you also need to have a good relationship with the vendor. You always have to be available too, as problems can arise with the goods, for example issues with transport or the quantities available.
Personally, above all else I like fish because it’s such a versatile product. What I particularly like is that there are so many types of fish, as well as so many ways of using it.
How do you show your commitment outside your work?
I teach apprentice fishmongers at the Chamber of Commerce.
Could you give us a favourite recipe for one of your products?
I have a personal preference for shellfish because they’re so easy to prepare in so many different ways. For tapas dishes, I recommend frying clams in olive oil in a really hot frying pan with a finely chopped garlic clove and some white wine. Sprinkle chopped parsley all over and serve with a Pains & Tradition slow-baked baguette and a nice glass of Minuty rosé. It only takes 10 minutes and you’re spirited away to a summer’s evening with sea and sand.