Interesting, useful and impressive all the same. Now just wait for those crayfish questions next pub quiz.
Across the world, there are several types of crayfish – and they go under various (more or less common) names; mud bug, crawdad, crawfish and crayfish. In Swedish, they’re called ‘kräftor’.
In Sweden, a crayfish party is referred to as a ‘kräftskiva’ and stems from the 1930s – although crayfish has been popular food in Sweden since the 1500s.
Until 1994, there were laws dictating when you were allowed to fish for crayfish – after over-fishing in the 1800s led to significantly lower crayfish numbers. These days good export means you can have it year round, but in Sweden it is still an ingrained August-September (end of summer) event.
Crayfish parties vary from smaller gatherings of you, your cousin and his friend, to massive street parties with thousands of crayfishinados. Most common in Sweden and the Swedish-speaking part of Finland, but also popular in Norway.
Crayfish season unofficially starts the first Wednesday in August.
When attending a crayfish party, you will be expected to wear a crayfish bib (useful), a crayfish hat (makes you look silly), use crayfish napkins, be surrounded by crayfish garlands and various crazy looking man-in-the-moon lanterns.
Aquavit is a must at crayfish parties – the rule is one shot per claw (make them small or you’ll be experience the infamous ‘drunken legs’ before you know it).Skål!
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