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Popular Fish and Seafood Terms

There are countless types of lobster, crab, and other seafood available. There are even more words that refer to preparation methods. Whether you are looking to purchase seafood wholesale or are visiting a new restaurant, here are some popular fish and seafood terminology that will help you navigate the various selections.

  • Butterfly Shrimp – This term refers to how a shrimp is processed, not the type of shrimp. The vein and the shell are removed, and the tail is left on. Shrimp is usually sold in bulk packages, based on the range of shrimp present per pound.
  • Calamari – Calamari is another word for squid. Calamari is chewy. Because of this texture, it is often cut into thin rings, battered, and deep fried.
  • Ceviche – A ceviche is a citrus salad from Peru. Seafood, like shrimp, clams, or mussels, and select vegetables are marinated in citrus juices. Because of its simple preparation method, ceviche can be made in small or bulk amounts.
  • Roe – Roe is often used in reference to sushi. It is another term for caviar, or fish eggs. Sturgeon, salmon, and shad are just a few of the types of fish from which the roe is specially gathered for consumption.
  • Soft-shelled crab – Soft-shelled crab is another name, in the U.S. anyway, for blue crab. A blue crab can only be considered soft-shelled if it has molted. They molt, or shed their hard shells, from April to the middle of September.
  • Surimi – Surimi is made of cheaper seafood. It is processed into a puree and is molded in shapes that resemble, typically, more expensive foods like lobster or crab meat. Surimi is often packaged and sold by wholesale distributors to major markets and grocery stores.
  • Unagi – Unagi is another word for eel, and is far more popular at markets overseas.
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    Frank's Fish Market
    16 Station Pl, Salinas, CA 93901
    (831) 422-0879
    Bayfresh Seafood
    7662 Sandholdt Rd, Moss Landing, CA 95039
    (831) 633-5160
    Pacific Harvest Seafoods
    800 Salinas Rd, San Juan Bautista, CA 95045
    (408) 295-2455
    Del Mar Seafoods Inc.
    331 Ford St, Watsonville, CA 95076
    (831) 763-3000
    Far West Marine
    493 Lake Ave, Santa Cruz, CA 95062
    (831) 462-9452
    Lusamerica Foods Inc
    16480 Railroad Ave, Morgan Hill, CA 95037
    (408) 778-4850
    Dave's Gourmet Albacore Outlet
    310 Coral St Ste A, Santa Cruz, CA 95060
    (831) 457-2250
    Stagnaro Bros. Sea Food Inc.
    320 Washington St, Santa Cruz, CA 95060
    (831) 423-1188
    V L Foods Inc
    3037 Oliver Dr, San Jose, CA 95135
    (408) 274-7788
    L & D
    1712 Stone Ave Ste 2, San Jose, CA 95125
    (408) 298-9686
    Race Street Foods
    1170 Olinder Ct, San Jose, CA 95122
    (408) 294-6161
    Mekong Seafoods LLC
    1310 Tully Rd Ste 104, San Jose, CA 95122
    (408) 292-4567
    K & C Food Wholesale
    841 N 13th St, San Jose, CA 95112
    (408) 294-7013
    Todays Catch Seafood
    1580 Kerley Dr, San Jose, CA 95112
    (408) 453-3474
    SL Seafood
    4340 Stevens Creek Blvd Ste 163, San Jose, CA 95129
    (408) 983-0988


    Wholesale fish and seafood is purchased every day by consumers, restaurants, and major distributors around the world. Fresh lobster, shrimp, salmon, crab, and fish are both imported and exported to markets and suppliers. This major industry brings in millions of dollars every year through restaurants and grocery stores alone. There is more than likely a fish and seafood company or distributor in your area. Across the United States, there is a consistent demand for seafood like sushi, frozen shrimp, dried oysters, fresh clams and tuna steaks. With so many fish and seafood options available, different eateries and markets offer different selections all the time. Some of the wholesale shell fish and seafood they acquire for customers include mussels, live lobsters, and fresh prawns. Depending on who the supplier is, the restaurant or market may get a discount rate when they purchase in bulk. However, it is important for all seafood distributors to make certain their shell fish, mussels, salmon, and clams are fresh before buying them. After all, consumers do not want to purchase old or expired fish. How fresh seafood is can make a world of difference in how it smells and tastes. By getting in touch with a local seafood restaurant, market, or supplier, you can learn a lot about specific dishes or shell fish they offer. The key is to focus on the specific types of fish or shrimp you are interested in. Make all inquiries you feel are necessary and relevant. Never be afraid to ask how fresh seafood is.
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