Freshly frozen fish

At Hokkai Suisan we work with freshly frozen fish products. We often receive questions about this: what it is and why we work with this technique. Our fish processor Dave is happy to  explain it to you.

What exactly is fresh freezing?
“Fresh freezing is the technique of shock freezing fresh products. In our case, it means that we quickly freeze the fish directly after it is caught, with a stunning 2 cm per hour. This way you can freeze a mackerel within three hours. This already happens on board of the ship.”

Why do you work with fresh freezing?
“To guarantee the best quality of fish. By freezing the fish very fast and very fresh, the structure of the cells remains intact. The oval-shaped ice crystals are not damaging the fish. As a result, you lose little to no moisture during defrosting and the taste of the fish is fully preserved. It’s like eating freshly caught fish. But then from your freezer.”

Are there any other advantages?
“Fish is a seasonal product. During the reproductive phase, the fish puts all its energy into the production of spawn. The fish meat then has a low quality; little fat and barely any taste. After spawning, the fish will eat a lot to regain its strength. This usually happens in the summer, when the sea is full of plankton. As the seawater gets colder in the fall, the fish stores extra fats and then the quality of the fish meat is at its best! With fresh freezing, we have found a way to offer fresh seasonal fish products all year round. We also give the fish the opportunity to continue to reproduce, which is a great ecological advantage.”

How do you prepare the fish in IJmuiden?
“Our mission is to spread Japanese food culture in the Netherlands and the rest of Europe. That is why we prepare the fish in an authentic Japanese way. The great advantage of fresh freezing is that you can freeze the fish again after thawing and processing without compromising on quality. As an example, I take the Saba Miso Zuke. We receive the Norwegian mackerel freshly frozen. We brine and marinate it in the traditional way with salt and miso. Then we freeze the fish in our special freezer with blowers very quickly, without losing taste nor quality.”

How do you guarantee quality during transport?
“By using freezer transport. Most orders we deliver ourselves with our special trucks for freezing transport. The other part is delivered via the courier service. The courier does not have special trucks for freezing transport, but we add dry ice to the orders. In this way, we guarantee the quality of our fish products during transport. ”

See our assortment of freshly frozen fish products in our
online shop