Our fleet of purse seiner fishing vessels operates out of the Pacific Ocean and can thus offer you purse seine caught tuna, as well as the more sustainable fishing method of Pole and Line caught tuna from South Africa, Namibia and St Helena Island.

Our main species of tuna that we trade in are:

Skipjack Tuna

skip-jackThe skipjack tuna, Katsuwonus pelamis, is a medium-sized perciform fish in the tuna family, Scombridae. It is otherwise known as the aku, arctic bonito, mushmouth, oceanic bonito, striped tuna or victor fish. It grows up to 1m (3.3 feet) in length.

It is a streamlined, fast-swimming pelagic fish, common in tropical waters throughout the world, where it inhabits surface waters in large shoals (up to 50,000 fish). Their main source of food includes fish, crustaceans, cephalopods and mollusks. It is an important prey species for large pelagic fish and sharks.

The skipjack tuna is an important commercial and game fish, usually caught using purse seine nets, and is sold fresh, frozen, canned, dried, slated and smoked.

The skipjack is a kosher fish as it has scales. In Japanese cuisine, skipjack tuna is known as “katsuo”, and is commonly smoked and dried to make “katsuobushi”, the central ingredient in making “dashi” (fish stock). Skipjack tuna is also used in “katsuo no shiokara”. Katsuo is considered to have “moderate” mercury contamination, however, and pregnant women are advised against eating large quantities.

Yellowfin Tuna

yellow-finThe yellowfin tuna, Thunnus Albacores is a type of tuna found in open waters of tropical and subtropical seas worldwide. It is an epipelagic fish ranging in the top 100m (330 feet) of the water column. Reported sizes have ranged as high as 239cm (94 inches) in length and 200kg (440lb) in weight. Also known as ahi tuna, from its Hawaiian name “ahi”, yellowfin is becoming a popular replacement for the severely depleted supplies of bluefin tuna.

The second dorsal fin and the anal fin are both bright yellow, thus the common name, and can be very long in mature specimens, as are the pectoral fins. The main body is a very dark metallic blue, changing to silver on the belly, which has about 20 vertical lines.

Yellowfin tuna tend to school with fish of the same size, including other specimens of tuna, and larger fish. They are often seen with dolphins, porpoises, whales and whale sharks. Yellowfin eat other fish, crustaceans and squid.

Bigeye Tuna

big-eyeThe bigeye tuna, Thunnus Obesus, is an important food fish and prized recreational game fish. It is a true tuna of the genus Thunnus, belonging to the wider mackerel family Scombridae.

Bigeye tuna are found in the open waters of all tropical and temperate oceans, but not the Mediterranean Sea.

Bigeye tuna vary up to 250 centimeters (98 in) in length. Its maximum weight probably exceeds 400 pounds (180 kg), with the all-tackle angling record standing at 392 pounds (178 kg). They are large, deep-bodied, streamlined fish with large heads and eyes. The pectoral fins are very long, reaching back as far as the second dorsal. They display 13 or 14 dorsal spines.

The bigeye forages in cold and oxygen-poor subsurface waters. Their blood extracts oxygen efficiently even in oxygen-poor conditions. Their vision functions well in low light conditions. The heart has an unusual ability to function effectively while foraging in cold subsurface water. Nonetheless, they must periodically return to warmer surface waters to warm up.

Longer-lived than the closely related yellowfin tuna, the bigeye has a lifespan of up to 12 years, with sexual maturity at age four. Spawning takes place in June and July in the northwestern tropical Atlantic, and in January and February in the Gulf of Guinea, which is the only known Atlantic nursery area.

Satellite tagging showed that bigeye tuna often spend prolonged periods diving deep below the surface during the daytime, sometimes reaching 500 meters (1,600 ft). Bigeye have been tracked entering water as cold as 5 °C (41 °F). These movements are thought to be in response to vertical migrations of prey organisms in the deep scattering layer.

Pacific Bonito

pacific-bonito

Bonito is a name given to various species of medium-sized, predatory fish in the mackerel family, including the common or Atlantic bonito (Sarda sarda) and the Pacific bonito. Bonito is smaller than tuna.

In Japanese cuisine outside Japan, “bonito” usually refers to the skipjack tuna which is known as “katsuo” in Japan. This fish is smoked and dried to make “katsuobushi”, an important ingredient in making “dashi” (Japanese fish stock), used extensively in Japanese cuisine.

Pacific and Atlantic bonito meat has a firm texture and a darkish colour. The bonito has a moderate fat content. The meat of the young or small bonito can be of higher colour, close to that of skipjack tuna, and is sometimes used as a cheaper substitute of skipjack, especially for canning purposes.

Albacore Tuna

albacore

The albacore tuna, Thunnus Alalunga, is a type of tuna in the family Scambridae. This species is also called albacore fish, longfin tuna, albies, pigfish, tombo ahi, binnaga, Pacific albacore, German bonito, longfin tunny or even just tuna. It is the only tuna species which may be marketed as “white meat tuna” in the United States.

It is found in the open waters of all tropical and temperate oceans as well as the Mediterranean Sea and the South East Atlantic. Lengths range up to 140cm and weights up to 30kg. The average size grading that we can offer from South Africa and Namibia are as follows: 3-7kgs, 7-10kgs and 10kgs+.

Albacore is a prized food and the albacore fishery is economically significant. Methods of fishing include pole and line, long-line fishing, trolling and some purse seining.

The pectoral fins of the albacore are very long, as much as 50% of the total length. The dorsal spines are 8 to 10 in number, and well forward of the rays of the dorsal fin. The anterior spines are much longer, giving a concave outline to the spiny part of the dorsal fin.