Below you will find a selection of our most frequently asked questions. Can’t find what you are looking for? Get in touch
What is the difference between Black Tiger Prawns and King Prawns?
There’s quite a big difference! Black Tiger prawns (Latin name: Penaeus Monodon) are actually larger than King Prawns, which is the name given to Whiteleg shrimp (Latin Name: Litopenaeus Vannamei) in the UK. The two species have different coloured shells and stripes too – Black Tiger prawns are darker in complexion when compared to King Prawns.
Do you perform eysestalk ablation on the broodstock (mother prawn)?
Absolutely not! Eyestalk ablation is industry jargon for removing the broodstock eyes. We find this practice to be cruel and inhumane. In fact, we are completely against this sort of practice, as it goes against our ethical principles and values. You will be pleased to know that a couple of days after spawning, our broodstocks are returned to the sea unharmed.
Is it true that your prawns are grown naturally and without any additional inputs?
Certainly is! Our prawns are grown using entirely natural methods, handed down through the generations. The prawns grow in low stocking density ponds, kept free from antibiotics, chemicals and artificial feed - something which, if you want to get technical, is known as a ‘zero-input’ silvo-fishery farming system.
You mentioned ‘100% traceable’. Can you explain a bit further?
Sure. Traceability is about knowing where our prawns have come from. It’s important to us, to our customers, and from an auditing perspective too. 100% traceable means we are able to trace our prawns back not just to the farms in which they were raised, but also right back to the hatchery. So when you eat our prawns, you can have full confidence that they’ve been raised ethically and responsibly.
You referred to ‘sustainability’. What exactly does it mean?
If you take a look at the ‘journey’ section of our website, you’ll see how our prawn farming practices go through one big cycle. Sustainability is all about making sure that cycle can continue turning long into the future, and protecting the environment at the same time.
Are your prawns listed on the Marine Conservation Society Good Fish Guide and if so, what is the rating?
We are pleased to say that Black Tiger prawns grown in zero-input systems are listed on the Good Fish Guide with a rating of ‘2’ - making them a green-rated Fish to Eat. For further information, please visit http://www.goodfishguide.org/
Can you explain how your prawns are harvested?
Our prawns are harvested by draining the ponds during low tide via a water gate system. The farmer installs a net at the water gate to catch the prawns as water flows out of the pond. Once the pond is fully drained, the farmer and his helpers will then ‘hand-pick’ the remaining prawns using traditional wooden racket nets. This way of harvesting prawns is known as ‘Ragah’.
Are there any ‘by-catch’ issues associated with your prawns?
By-catch issues (where fish or other marine life are caught unintentionally) are generally associated with fishing trawlers. We are happy to say that we do not use trawlers, and every prawn raised and harvested by The Happy Prawn Co. is done by hand. Other fish species are caught at harvest time, but they are sold to local markets - providing additional income for the farmers.
Why not increase the ‘stocking density’ of the ponds, so that the farmer harvests more prawns?
Having a low stocking density enables our prawns to grow naturally by feeding off the pond’s naturally occurring food. If the stocking density was increased, then additional 'inputs' would be required to support the extra numbers – something we don’t want to do. Low stocking density also reduces the chance of disease occurring in the pond.
What’s all that about mangrove projects?
Ah, yes, the mangroves. Great for prawns and great for the environment as a whole. Mangroves help to enhance the farm eco-system and even serve to protect farms on the coast from flooding. So, for a few years now, we’ve been helping to fund local projects right along the Indonesian coastline to plant more. It’s something we’ll continue to do in the future.
What farming certifications do you hold?
Our group of farms are now Global Aquaculture Alliance, Best Aquaculture Practices (GAA BAP) certified. In fact, we’re the first prawn producer in the world to achieve that certification! So, when you buy our prawns, you can be assured they’ve been raised responsibly and ethically in a natural environment.
Why do prawns change colour when cooked?
This occurs when pigments found in the prawn react with heat. The carotenoid pigment called astaxanthin is more stable in heat than the other pigments present, and it’s therefore this pigment’s reddish-orange colour that comes to the fore during cooking.