How To

How to buy fresh seafood with confidence

Do you know how to spot the freshest fish? Follow these tips to make sure you're buying the best quality of seafood for your family.

Where to shop

Fresh seafood (fish and shellfish) should always be bought from seafood markets or a reputable fishmonger.

Try to avoid supermarket seafood where possible as these are usually farmed varieties and are often less fresh than if you were buying first thing in the morning from a market.

What to look for

Whole fish should have firm, not spongy, flesh with red gills; the skin should be shiny with close-fitting scales and the eyes should be clear and bright.

Fish fillets and cutlets should have moist flesh with a firm texture; there should be no signs of discolouration or dryness. Any bones should be firmly attached to the flesh.

Crustaceans and molluscs should have brightly coloured shells or flesh, and the tentacles, heads, flesh or shells should be plump, firm and intact. Shells should be closed, or should close when tapped on a bench. There should also be no discolouration of the joints.

In general, seafood should look undamaged, with moist flesh and a firm texture.

Should it smell fishy?

All seafood should look fresh and have a fragrant, clean “sea” smell. Any seafood that smells “fishy” is no good to eat, the same goes with any seafood that smells slightly bitter and chemical. If you find yourself offended by the powerful fish odor, choose a different piece or visit another fishmonger.

How to transport it home

Bring an esky with you! If you are not going to use eat the seafood straight away then you need to keep it chilled for the journey home.

Ask the staff at the fishmongers to give you a little ice to add to your esky or cooler bag. Or ask them to double bag your seafood with a little ice.

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