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Choosing And Buying Gourmet Seafood - Wild Caught American Shrimp

John C. Banks

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Wild American shrimp are delicious steamed, boiled, grilled, fried and in recipes such as scampi. They are also popular as an appetizers such as cocktails, bisques and salads. They also freeze well and can be purchased in large numbers, processed and excess amounts frozen for later meals.

Shrimp tend to be low in fat and calories and have no carbohydrates or trans fatty acids. They contain vitamins B3, B6, B12, vitamin D and Omega-3 fatty acids and are sources of tryptophan, selenium, protein and minerals including iron, phosphorus, zinc and copper.

American species include white (Litopenaeus setiferus), brown (Farfantepenaeus aztecus), pink (Penaeus duorarum) and royal red (Pleoticus robustus or Hymenopenaeus robustus) rock (Sicyonia brevirostris) and Northern (Pandalus borealis).

Shrimp are sized by “count". The number is the average number of specimens per pound. This applies to both whole and heads-off products. For example, headless 16/20 count means there are 16 to 20 headless product per pound. Counts for headless product typically range from 16/20 (large) to 60/70 (small). The Pacific pink species are even smaller, having counts of about 100 to 140 whole specimens per pound.

Wild American shrimp are also a good choice in terms of sustainability. Several American fisheries have been recognized for ethical harvesting techniques.

The Wild American Shrimp Certification Program certifies that warm-water, wild caught shrimp from U. S. coastal waters meet a high standard of quality and consistency. Certified wild American Shrimp receive special labeling. Participation in the certification program is available to harvesters, processors, distributors, retailers, grocers and restaurateurs.

Another American fishery has received international recognition. Oregon's pink shrimp fishery has earned the world's first sustainable shrimp certification under the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certification program.

Pink shrimp, also known as bay or salad shrimp are small (100-140 whole per lb). They are harvested using advanced trawl methods. Pink MSC certified shrimp are delivered to shore for cooking, peeling and freezing, resulting in an extremely fresh product of excellent quality.

The variety of high quality, healthy and sustainable American shrimp makes them an excellent choice for seafood lovers.

The author maintains seafood related websites including Fresh-Seafood , Commercial Fishing and Chincoteague Island Virginia .


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