Octopus & Squid

Long popular in Mediterranean and Asian cuisine, octopus and squid are becoming an increasingly sought after ingredient in modern Western dishes. Where squid is the familiar favorite, octopus has become the rising star. The tender yet firm meat of the squid adapts well to many cooking methods and fits nicely into traditional recipes. Octopus offers a more vibrant flavor and alluring and rich taste and texture. At the same time that octopus and squid are gaining momentum as popular seafood items, their populations are booming across the world. Octopus and squid live in the “fast lane”, growing quickly and typically living for only one or two years. They produce lots of eggs, and their eggs have relatively low mortality rates. These traits enable rapid adaptation to changes in the ocean environment which have become even more pronounced in recent decades thanks to human activity.


With less than one per cent of the global octopus catch considered sustainable, the giant Pacific octopus fishery is a rare example of a green-listed model of good management. A cephalopod mollusk that like the other free swimming invertebrates, squid and cuttlefish, lacks a hard shell, the giant Pacific octopus is the largest of the species. Growing to as much as 135 pounds during a three-to-five year life span, the giant Pacific octopus are typically harvested as bycatch in the trap fisheries. The giant Pacific octopus features a highly flavorful meat which is considered a delicacy. When simmered, the flesh will change color and become delicate and tender.


Growing to more than six feet in length, the Pacific Humboldt (or jumbo flying) are the largest of all commercial squid. These marine mammoths can alter their appearance through bioluminescence in which they rapidly change their color from deep red to pearly white providing them with a measure of camouflage, both from predators and prey alike. Feeding on a diet of shrimp, hake and other small fish, Pacific Humboldt squid grow quickly and reproduce at a young age, making them highly resilient to fishing pressure. With a thick walled, sweet, and tender flesh, the Pacific Humboldt squid is particularly well suited to calamari steaks in addition to more traditional calamari dishes.