Tuna is versatile pelagic that can be found in all temperate oceans around the globe. Tunas are harvested in many different forms, from artisanal hand lines to longlines to purse seiners. Tuna being one of the very few warm blooded fishes in the ocean require special handling on board the vessels.
All of our tunas are graded by a specialized tuna grader for color, fat content, texture, and freshness at the origin and again in our plant, to insure quality, grades, and specific needs. Tunas include about 15 different species, however we will only consider four species (Yellowfin, Bigeye, Bluefin and Albacore) below for our commercial purposes. Fresh tuna has grown rapidly in popularity over the last 25 years and is now one of the most popular finfish on restaurant menus worldwide.
Yellowfins are the most common tunas (rarely obtaining weights over 175#) found in the US market and known for their translucent pinkish red meat color. Often served raw as sushi and sashimi or steaks are grilled over high heat to just sear the outside leaving the inside pink to raw depending on individual preferences. Majority of our tunas are harvested from longlines.
Bigeyes are typically prized for their size, often reaching over 200lbs. Some Bigeyes will have some degree of fat content that is rarely seen in Yellowfin tunas. The meat color often reaches a deeper red color that is preferred by some.
Bluefins are the largest of all tunas reaching up to 1000#. Also a red meat tuna, an average Bluefin tuna is 400 to 500 pounds. Although sale of the fish is highly regulated in many countries, they are a prized sport fish. They are also prized (especially in Japan) for their taste and flavor. Individual fish are graded for meat color, freshness and especially fat content. Top quality fish are often sold at auction in Japan and other areas of the world. In January of 2013 at Tokyo’s Tsukiji Fish Market a single 487 pound Bluefin tuna sold at auction for $1,760,000 USD ($3,603 per pound).
Albacores are smaller in size (normally 30-50 pounds) with a much lighter meat color as opposed to the species above. They are also less desirable in the market place and draw a lower price.