Market Name: Tuna
Scientific Name: Thunnus alalunga
Common Name: Albacore, longfin tuna, tombo (Hawaiian)
Flavor: Mild/Moderate
Texture: Firm

Albacore is best known as America’s highest-grade, “white meat” canned tuna. In fact, it’s the only tuna meat allowed to be labeled “white meat.” However, it has also developed a reputation out of the can in fresh and frozen markets. The albacore has a streamlined, torpedo-shaped body. It sports the blue and silver coloration of the other tunas but has longer pectoral fins. A schooling fish, albacore is caught in tropical and subtropical waters worldwide by trollers and longliners. In the Atlantic, albacore migrate as far north as the Bay of Biscay. Along the North American side of the Atlantic, they are sparse. In the Pacific fisheries, they exist off the West Coast and in the waters around Hawaii. The fish can range in size from 5 to 100 pounds, although the average market weight is between 10 and 30 pounds. High-grade “clipper” albacore loins, from which steaks can easily be taken, have been cut from freshly landed tuna and frozen onboard. Yield and quality are excellent. Tuna must be kept well chilled from the moment of harvest to prevent develop ment of histamine, which can result in scromboid poisoning.

Product Profile:
Albacore has a mild, rich taste and a firm, steaky texture, with large, moist flakes. Albacore meat is less dense than bluefin tuna, though it is one of the fattiest species, with more omega-3 than the rest of the tunas. Albacore has the lightest-colored meat of all the tunas, though it can range from light beige to almost brown when raw. All albacore flesh becomes off-white after cooking. Albacore meat is not as firm as yellowfin or bluefin, which makes it less suited for sashimi.

You Should Know:
Because of high methylmercury content in albacore, the FDA advises persons at risk to limit consumption of this tuna to 6 ounces per week.

Cooking Tips:
Albacore, like the other tunas, should appeal to meat lovers, especially those who like to grill. Albacore cooks quickly, and for maximum flavor is best served rare. Try searing albacore steaks to serve with a highly seasoned sauce. Marinating before cooking and basting during will keep albacore moist and prevent it from turning tough.

Cooking Methods: Broil,Grill,Saute'

Substitutions: Other tunas, Mako shark, Swordfish

Primary Product Forms:
Fresh: Whole, H&G, Loins, Steaks
Frozen: Whole, H&G, Loins, Steaks
Value-Added: Canned, Smoked

Global Supply: