You may be asking “why are these folks talking shrimp when everyone else is talking turkey?” Well, because seafood was served at the first Thanksgiving feast AND sometime in the week or so (they won’t let me say exactly when) we’re going to offer an incredible value on farm-raised shrimp exclusively from your local Whole Foods Market fishmonger. When the time comes, we want you to already know the back story about what sets our shrimp apart from the rest. That way you can really appreciate the value you are getting!With that in mind, here’s the story on farmed shrimp. We source from only three producers and have traceability back to their farms. And these are not your typical farms; our producers meet our standards for protecting the environment by avoiding mangrove areas to protect sensitive ecosystems and maintain good water quality. You’ll never find added phosphates or sulfates in our shrimp— we don’t want anything to take away from the sweet, delicate flavor of shrimp raised right. In fact, our shrimp are harvested to order and flash frozen within hours of harvest and you can taste the difference.We’ve travelled to shrimp farms around the world, and there is reason to be careful in the shrimp you choose. Our producer in Thailand (who will be supplying the shrimp for the upcoming special) owns their hatchery, feed mill, ponds and production facility. We have full traceability back to the pond itself, and our shrimp is harvested to order — a rarity in the industry.One of our buyers, Wesley Rose, headed there last year and came back exclaiming, “Not only one of the hottest places on earth, but one of the best run shrimp operations I’ve ever seen.” That means a lot from the man who’s been everywhere from Alabama and Texas to Honduras and Vietnam looking for the right product that can meet Whole Foods Market’s rigorous aquaculture standards. Of course, the shrimp from this Thailand producer meets or exceeds all of our standards and it wears our Responsibly Farmed logo with honor.What set’s this shrimp apart, aside from perfect flavor? Being fully integrated is only a piece of the puzzle. The farms from this producer operate in an area where mangrove destruction is not necessary. Regardless, they go the extra step and replant mangroves at many of their sites. They’ve also set up a foundation where they fund yearly scholarships for local children, assist local farmers in need and donate to local disaster relief organizations — not something you always find overseas. They don’t use parasiticides, and our shrimp arrive free of added phosphates and sulfates.
That means the only thing you taste is mild, sweet shrimp. This variety is Vannamei, a white shrimp that has taken the world by storm. Vannamei’s are often served in fine restaurants and are prized for their mellow flavor and ability to adapt to a variety of recipes. Here are a few to try them in:
Our shrimp are harvested and individually frozen within hours. They thaw quickly and retain all the full flavor and texture that make crustaceans a holiday favorite. Why not mix it up this year and serve cooked shrimp to your hungry guests while they wait for their turkey to finish in the oven. Once they try our shrimp with your favorite cocktail sauce, don’t be surprised if they secretly hope the bird takes a little longer.