Red Shrimp Sourcing in Argentina
Big Prawn’s sourcing manager, Nick Neeld, recently travelled to South America in search of new fisheries. On this trip to South America, Nick was searching for the best fishery in Argentina for red shrimp.
Nick embarked upon the laborious journey to Bueno Aires for the first stop. However, this was just the first stop to Puerto Madryn. It was here in Puerto Madryn that Nick was reviewing Red Shrimp Fisheries.
About Puerto Madryn
Puerto Madryn is the number one destination for marine wildlife, from watching to sourcing. A gateway city to Península Valdés, this city is livened by tourism and the fishery industry with a sense of local charm. It is the third largest city in Patagonia with a population of under 100,000. The stunning coastline of Puerto Madryn has unique ties to Wales after being founded by 150 Welsh immigrants in 1865.
About Red Shrimp
Red shrimp are caught in the South Atlantic, off the coast of Argentina. As the name must suggest, the shrimp are red when they’re caught. Other shrimp tend to be a blue/grey colour before they’re cooked and then turn the familiar pink. Red Shrimp is known as the sweetest shrimps in the world. The quality of taste and texture of red shrimp have even been likened to lobster. This variety of shrimp is also much large in size in comparison to other wild-caught shrimp.
Red Shrimp Sustainability
As red shrimp is becoming the new rising star of the crustacean world, there have been a number of advancements in the improvement of fisheries. As global demand increases, harvesting, processing, and management of the red shrimp in Argentina have drastically improved. In terms of sustainability, there is work in place to grant MSC certification for both the inland and off-shore fisheries. Full certification is targeted for 2018/19. Furthermore, the processing plants in Argentina, that Big Prawn was visiting, operate to an extremely high standard. They have been accredited to the British Retail Consortium’s Food Standard at Grade A or above.
Opportunities for Big Prawn
The second processing facility that Nick travelled to was in Rawson. Here, he was able to get a real idea of the whole process from fresh shrimp landing to producing raw, headless, easy peel, and de-veined prawns. The processing plant offered some great possibilities for Big Prawn with the landing area showing an insight into the whole operation.
There are two fishing seasons for red shrimp in Argentina. The in-shore season runs from October to March. For this season, there are day boats that land the product chilled on ice. then processed on land. The off-shore fishing season is known as the National Fishery. This runs from May to October and has larger vessels working away from the shore. These large boats freeze the shrimp on-board.
Overall, this trip was extremely interesting for Big Prawn. We look forward to the potential possibilities that Argentinian Red Shrimp can offer to us and our customers.
We are excited to announce that Red Shrimp is now part of our range! Find out more here