South Australia’s Dinko Tuna is using a cryogenic freezing system to ensure the prized Southern Bluefin Tuna is available year round. This story was first published in Food & Drink Business March 2020.
Southern Bluefin Tuna is seen as one of the most luxurious seafoods. Prized in the Japanese sashimi market for its high fat content, its lucrative appeal is only heightened by its brief 10-week peak season.
South Australian-based tuna farm Dinko Tuna has invested $1.2 million in developing a facility that uses –60 Celsius freezing technology for a sustainable solution to offer the tuna all year round.
Dinko Tuna managing director Lukina Lukin says she spent three years finding new technologies and models of production.
“The cryogenic freezing system minimises cell damage in the muscles, resulting in perfect texture, colour and flavour when thawed.
“The freezing only takes 45 minutes, which guarantees the culinary integrity of the flesh is retained,” Lukin says.
The Dinko Tuna team harvests Southern Bluefin Tuna as late as possible in the season to ensure the wild, mature fish are ranched for a minimal amount of time.
The fish are ranched at Port Lincoln in sea pens until they double in weight.
They hold minimal stocking densities as well as a reduced ranching period so the Dinko Southern Bluefin Tuna “remain in perfect condition”.
The fish are fed fresh, wild-caught feed from Dinko’s MSC certified Australian sardine fishery. Once harvested, the tuna is portioned into four loins, with each pack containing a top and bottom loin from either side of the fish.
Lukin says she has also invested in organic, fresh feeds for the tuna so the flavour and texture is similar to wild fish.
“The result is a Southern Bluefin Tuna product that is home grown, exceptional quality and sustainably farmed,” she says.