Unlocking of difficulties:
• Seafood - any sea animal or seaweed that is served as food.
• Specks - small spots
• Visceral - internal organs
• Eviscerated - to remove the essential parts
• Thorax - the part of the body between the neck and the
Types of Sea food
Crustaceans Cephalopods Mollusks
Types of Seafood
1. Vertebrate or finfish.
•These are fishes that has a back bone and its
flesh is edible.
•These are bangus, bisugo, tilapia, dalag, catfish
and other fresh water fish.
2. Shellfish. Shellfish can be classified into:
crustaceans, mollusks and cephalopods.
a.Crustaceans are shellfishes with hard shells over
the back of the body and along the claws but
have softer shells covering the lower part of
the body and legs. Ex. Crabs, lobster and
b. Mollusks. There are two types of mollusks:
the univalves with only one shell and bivalves
with two shells. Example of univalve is:
kuhol while bivalves are clams (kabibi, tulya),
oysters (talaba) and mussels (tahong).
•Cephalopods have reduced internal
shell. Squid, cuttlefish and octopus
belong to this classification.
SELECTION AND BUYING OF FISH AND SHELLFISH
Characteristics of fresh Fish:
• Fresh fish has no foul odor.
• The eyes are clear, full and bright, not dull and sunken.
• Gills are bright red.
• The flesh is firm and elastic.
• Skin is shiny with scales intact.
• Fish is covered with a natural lime, the odor and amount of which are the
characteristics of the species.
• Abdomen and belly walls are intact and free from discoloration.
• Fresh shellfish such as crabs, talangka, mussels, oysters, snails, lobsters and shrimps, must be
• Fresh crabs should have firm joints that are stiff when bent, and they should be heavy for
• Fresh lobsters should have dark brownish green color with orange specks and bright eyes
and should be heavy for their size.
• Fresh oysters are difficult to open and the meat should have clear creamy color.
• Live clams should have their shells tightly closed.
• Fresh shrimps should have their head intact, their meat firm, and with no objectionable odor.
They are somewhat translucent and not with black or orange color.
Market Forms of Fish
There are fishes which can be marketed
alive because they live long after catch. Good
examples of these are dalag, hito and tilapia.
Whole or round fish
Most fresh fish is distributed in local
market fish stalls as whole or round fish.
Shortly after catch, fish is chilled in ice to
This is a whole fish with the entrails
removed. Preparation for cooking
involves scaling and cutting as needed.
Most fish in modern supermarkets are
available in this form.
Dressed fish has been scaled and
eviscerated. Often the head, tail and fins are
This is the form most convenient in the
case of bangus. The deboned bangus is sold
frozen often times marinated and ready-to-
These are cross section slices of dressed large
fishes. A portion of the backbone is usually the
only in a fish steak. Steaks which are half to two
thirds of an inch thick are usually best. Steaks cut
away from visceral cavity are solid slices and are
preferred by discrimination of consumers.
These are fillets or steaks cut further
into smaller uniform pieces like sticks.
They are usually breaded and frozen.
Fish meat separated from the whole
fish is called flaked fish. Labahita is
commonly made into flaked fish.
Market Forms of Shellfish
Crabs, clams, mussels, oysters, snails and
lobsters should be alive if purchased in the shell
except for boiled crabs and lobsters. Ideally,
shrimps should also be marketed alive.
Most shrimps marketed locally are whole.
These are bivalves or mollusks which have been
removed from the shell. Oysters, clams and
scallops may be sold in this form; Fresh shucked
oysters have a translucent appearance. They
become opaque with standing.
•Most shrimps, prawns and lobsters for exports are
marketed in the headless form, the head and thorax are
•The head is removed mainly because it is the main
source of bacterial spoilage during transport and also
because it does not appeal to most foreign palates.
Shrimps, crabs and lobsters may be cooked
in the shell prior to marketing.
The meat of shrimps, crabs and
lobsters may be marketed cooked,
usually in cans.
Handling, Storing and Thawing Fish
• Fish and fishery products are transported in fishing boats
or commercial ships.
• Higher value fishery products like shrimps and prawns and
special fish varieties especially those intended for restaurants
and other institutional food service establishments may be
transported by air.
•Land transportation for large quantities
can be in open truck but the most
common means of transporting up to
1000 kg is by owner type jeepneys.
• Insulated fish boxes or tubs are arranged
on platforms as the rear end of vehicle.
• The method of handling and transport of fish as
practiced may not always be for keeping the fish at
• But while both fisherman and trader are aware of
this, cost considerations always prevail.
• Bigger fish operators, however, make sure that
proper holding temperature of not more than 4C
can be achieved with adequate icing and true
insulated fish boxes.
• A water-soluble synthetic co-polymer with
cold-retention ability is used to keep fish
frozen during transport.
• The material is initially a powder that
becomes a gel when water is added.
• The resulting gel is frozen at 40 to 30C before
using. The fish is placed between bags of this
• The fish to be packed has to be cooled down first
because the gel cannot cool fish at ambient
temperature but it can maintain a cold temperature
that will avoid thawing of an already frozen fish.
• The advantage of the gel pack is that it does not
drip like ice so it is particularly suitable for air
• The fish to be packed has to be cooled down
first because the gel cannot cool fish at
ambient temperature but it can maintain a
cold temperature that will avoid thawing of an
already frozen fish.
• The advantage of the gel pack is that it does
not drip like ice so it is particularly suitable for
Freezer ( 0o )
Fresh water fish, cleaned
Clams, oyster (shucked)
3 – 5 days
2 – 3 days
3 – 5 days
3 – 4 days
1 – 2 weeks
7 – 9 days
3 – 5 days
6 – 9 months
4 – 6 months
4 – 5 weeks
3 – 4 months
6 – 12 months
Storage Times for Seafood