Opakapaka Fillet

Product #: 11076F

Scientific Name: Trachinotus carolinus

Country of Origin: U.S.A.

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Catch Info:

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Pompano has a firm texture with a sweet and mild flavor. It has attractive silver skin that is edible and does not need to be scaled.

Pompano is found throughout the Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean Sea, and Gulf of Mexico, but in the U.S. is most frequently caught off the coast of Florida.

The Florida pompano populations are healthy after being overfished in the early 2000s, but fishing pressure is too still high off the Atlantic coast. Pompano are caught primarily by nets (gillnets, seines and cast nets) with some harvest by hook and line. These gears are minimally invasive and should have little impact on ocean habitats. The only gear that is likely to have significant amounts of bycatch is the gill net, because the nets are left to float in the water unattended for a period of time and entangle a variety of species. Gillnets are prohibited in Florida state waters but are still used in federal waters in the Gulf of Mexico.

Opakapaka is also known as the Hawaiian pink snapper, although its skin is light brown. Found at depths between 180 and 600 feet, fish caught over hard bottoms have brighter skin colors than those caught over soft bottoms. When properly cared for, opakapaka has a long shelf life. It has a clear, light pink flesh with a delicate flavor that has earned it the reputation as Hawaii’s premium snapper. Fish caught during the winter months tend to have a higher fat content than those caught in the summer, and opakapaka yields the best sashimi during the winter. Opakapaka range in size from 1 to 18 pounds. It grows larger in the Hawaiian Islands than anywhere else in the South Pacific. Opakapaka are harvested exclusively with vertical hook-and-line gear.

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