ALL CHEFS AND FOOD HANDLERS
***VERY IMPORTANT HANDLING INSTRUCTIONS***
THINGS ARE BEGINNING TO HEAT UP IN PARTS OF OUR DISTRIBUTION REACH. PREVENT MORTALITY IN YOUR
LIVE SHELLFISH PRODUCTS BY FOLLOWING THE INSTRUCTIONS BELOW. NO EXCEPTIONS!
- Keep mussels buried in ice at all times in false bottom boxes or drip pans.
- Keep mussels refrigerated at all times in false bottom boxes or drip pans.
- Upon arrival, the mussels should be cold, wet, and nearly closed tight. If you notice the shell is gaping open, this is normal.
- Try running cold water over the mussel and you will see the mussel close- sometimes immediately, sometimes over a period
of a few minutes. If it remains wide open, the mussel has died or is dying and you should avoid consumption.
- Temperature is always an important factor, however it is even more critical during this time. When mussels are ready to reproduce,
increases in temperature or rough handling will cause them to release spawn.
- If you do find that the mussels have spawned, take the bags out of the boxes and immediately rinse them off with FRESH, ICE
COLD WATER. Rinse and drain the bottom of the boxes before returning the mussels to the box. Ice the mussels down
with fresh ice and keep them as close to 35 degrees F as possible.
Critical control points are:
- Loading docks. Move product directly into coolers,
- Hot kitchens. Keep mussels iced and in the cooler until the time of preparation.
- Do not transport without ice or on non-refrigerated trucks.
Please take the time to pass this information and handling instruction on to your customers.
Information provided courtesy of American Mussel Harvestors, North Kingston, RI