Learning More About Seafood from the Gulf
What makes Gulf seafood so special?
1. The taste: Many popular species of seafood are found in the Gulf. Grouper, snapper, swordfish, tuna, mackeral and crawfish are all caught throughout the region. The flesh of the fish is what makes many Gulf species so popular. Many gulf fish migrate long distances and survive in cold water. Because of this, Gulf fish typically have a firmer texture and cleaner taste than that of warm-water fish.
2. The quality: Chefs can expect consistent, high-quality product when ordering fresh seafood from the Gulf. Federal and state regulations in the United States are much more detailed than other governments around the globe. Following strict fishing rules and regulations, Gulf fis
hermen and suppliers must obtain proper licenses and permits to harvest, process, buy, and sell seafood from the Gulf. Every facility that the seafood touches must be HACCP certified.
3. The story: Harvested and processed in Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida, fresh gulf seafood creates thousands of jobs in the southern United States. Many fishing charters are family owned and operated. The Gulf seafood industry supports countless local economies.
Is Gulf seafood safe to eat?
Thankfully, yes. Since the devastating oil spill in 2010, fresh, wild-caught Gulf seafood is among the most rigorously tested seafood in the world. The F.D.A. has kept a close eye on the region and ensures suppliers and customers that Gulf seafood is safe to eat. In fact, many tests administered by some of the largest organizations in the country show that Gulf seafood is 100-1000 times below any level of concern for contamination. Population wise, almost every species of fish, shrimp, and oyster has fully recovered since the disaster 7 years ago.
How much domestic seafood comes out of the Gulf?
Lots and lots. Year round, seafood from the Gulf is in very high demand. The region produces more than two thirds of the nation’s domestic shrimp and oysters. The body of water is also a leading producer of domestic blue crabs.
Pictured: Fireback Grouper from Florida
Is gulf seafood sustainable?
It sure is. Sustainable fishing practices have been the driving force of industry growth. Strict catch limit regulations are in place. Bycatch (fish caught in the process of targeting another) is more popular than ever before. And finally, more and more chefs are choosing to feature invasives, non-native fish who have been introduced to local waters and have the potential to destroy entire populations of fish. Examples of these invasive species include lionfish and some types of carp and catfish.
Can Land & Sea source seafood from the Gulf?
We sure can. From time to time we purchase fresh seafood from the Gulf. Nearly all the time we have a wide variety of frozen options available. In addition to the products that we already carry, utilizing our vast supplier network, depending on your need we can source almost any species at any time (
depending on season of course).