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Salt and the Sea

Salt, also known as Sodium Chloride, is a necessary component of every living organism and a significant link in the nutritional chain. 
It is a natural spice and preservative, it helps human digestion and it is a nutrient that should be included in any healthy and balanced diet.
 
It is found in abundance in nature, either dissolved in sea water or the water of some lakes, or as a mineral inside the earth.  
 
A basic advantage of natural sea salt, as opposed to its mineral form, is its crystalline structure, which contains all precious trace elements of marine water, such as potassium, calcium, magnesium, etc. 
 
The earliest method of collecting salt, which is still widely used, uses solar and wind power. During sea water evaporation–condensation, there is successive, natural crystallisation of invaluable mineral salts.  
 
Besides the production of salt, there is another equally important biological process at work at the salt marshes.
There are microorganisms growing there that create natural saline ecosystems, valuable for maintaining bird fauna and the biodiversity of our planet. These microorganisms are an important component in the production of salt. Therefore, the quality of the marine water that feeds the salt marsh is a decisive factor for maintaining the salt plan ecosystem.
 
Greece is a Mediterranean country, with sunny beaches and this favours the crystallisation process at the shallow basins known as salt pans or frying pans.  The main salt works operating today are at Messolonghi, Lesbos, Kitros, Thessaloniki and Xanthi; the one in Messolonghi is at the top of Greek Salt Production, both from a quantitative and, mainly, from a qualitative aspect.
 
The Messolonghi marshes are a protected Ramsar wetland (http://www.ramsar.org ) and one of the best quality sites in Europe; they are also the main supplier for CHION.