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More About Swordfish

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This Time of Year, We Go Down Under

Recipe: Swordfish Siciliana

Recipe: Swordfish Siciliana

Swordfish Meets the Mediterannean

How We Helped Certify Sustainability for North Atlantic Swordfish

How We Helped Certify Sustainability for North Atlantic Swordfish

Our Signature Fish

Fish: The Subject was Swordfish

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The Goodness of the Sea

Sustaining the Swordfish

Sustaining the Swordfish

Doing Our Part to Protect the Supply

Fresh Swordfish is a Must for BST

Being one of our premier products, we take a lot of pride in the swordfish we bring into our house. In order to maintain the best quality swordfish, we must adapt with the weather throughout the seasons and source from the best waters. Our current supply is outstanding quality with just the right type of variety our customers are consistently looking for. Fresh Swordfish

Fresh Swordfish

The summer is obviously a huge season for seafood, but warm waters aren't always the best environment for quality with some species of fish, fresh swordfish included. That being said, the local North East waters of North America, especially Canada, are just the right temp during this time of year and become home to a gorgeous selection of fresh swordfish.

Aside from local and Canadian waters, we have been sourcing a large portion of our fresh swordfish inventory from Australia, where it is currently their winter and the waters also become an excellent home to some great swordfish. 

Again, adapting with the weather throughout the seasons and being able to source product throughout the world with our experience and expertise is just another reason why Boston Sword & Tuna is one of the nations premier seafood suppliers. Our fresh swordfish is a token to this truth.

Fresh Swordfish: A BST Staple Product

A BST signature product, our fresh swordfish comes from our own longline fishing vessels, as well as from some of the best fishermen in the North Atlantic swordfish fleet, which fishes from the Gulf of Mexico to the Grand Banks off Newfoundland, depending on the time of year.

Fresh Swordfish

Fresh Swordfish Migration

Boston Sword & Tuna fishing vessel – the Iron Maiden – and the rest of the local East Coast Fleet have been following the fresh swordfish through their natural migration throughout the winter. The colder weather marks the annual swordfish quest to spawn in warmer waters before returning back to the North East by summertime to feed. The crews have been concentrating their efforts between the offshore mid-Atlantic ridge down to the Florida Keys and will continue there until late spring.

Along with the mid-Atlantic warm water fish we supplement our supply with, we have been importing fresh swordfish from other parts of the world including: Australia, South Africa, Costa Rica, etc. Hawaiian tuna is a very high demand product during these cold weather months, and BST is currently receiving a lot of beautiful west coast fish from Hawaii and the California Fleet. 

The Iron Maiden is continuing its fresh swordfish trips to warmer waters, which means we will continue to see more warm water fish. As the summer months roll around the boats will begin fishing the Grand Banks again for the warm weather season in New England.


Fresh Swordfish Returning to Boston on the Iron Maiden


Fresh SwordfishBoston Sword & Tuna’s fishing vessel Iron Maiden returned home to the Boston Fish Pier yesterday where we unloaded over 40,000 pounds of the best quality fresh swordfish we see all year.

Fresh Swordfish is Prime This Time of the Year

The Iron Maiden fished the Grand Banks, where the gulf stream meets the labrador current 800 miles east of Cape Cod, to the Flemish Cap, which is another 250 miles east. These are the prime late summer and fall fishing grounds for large fresh swordfish.

Right now is the best time of the year for quality fresh swordfish due to the east coast water fishing season. The fish are feeding hard and fattening up for the winter. The catch is averaging over 100 pounds per fish, and we are well stocked. Our team is ready to handle orders ranging from 10 pounds to 10,000 pounds for any given customer.

Despite these being some of the best quality swordfish we see all year, it is actually some of the best prices we see all year as well due to the abundant supply that comes around after the grilling season. It is the simple economics of supply and demand, and the supply is the best eating fresh swordfish of the year!


Sustainability and Fresh Swordfish Go Hand-in-Hand

Did you know Boston Sword & Tuna is one of the founding members of Sustainable Seafood LLC?  In August of 2012, Sustainable Seafood LLC applied for sustainable certification of the U.S. North Atlantic longline swordfish fishery by the Marine Stewardship Council. The MSC certification is widely considered to be the gold standard for sustainable seafood certification.


Fresh SwordfishFresh Swordfish Supplied By Sustainable Seafood LLC

The vast majority of North Atlantic fresh swordfish caught in the U.S. are harvested using pelagic longline gear. This hook and line method is considered one of most selective and conservation-oriented fishing methods used commercially worldwide.

Our two longliners, the Iron Maiden and the Iron Lady, fish in one of the best-managed fisheries in the world: the Northwest Atlantic swordfish fishery. A highly migratory fish, fresh swordfish are managed in the Atlantic by the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT). 

In the 1990s, North Atlantic swordfish stocks were steadily declining. Predominantly a result of international fishing pressure, the stock size was estimated to be at 58% of optimum levels. Therefore, a call to action was blatantly required in order to reverse this trend and preserve the swordfish population.

Today, fresh swordfish stocks in the Northwest Atlantic are fully recovered due to strict management of the fishery. These measures include:

  • Strictly enforced minimum size restrictions, ensuring that all swordfish are provided the opportunity to reproduce and secure the population.
  • Closure of large areas to avoid catching small swordfish.
  • Requirement that all swordfish boats must have vessel monitoring systems onboard to make certain they do not fish in closed areas.
  • Strict enforcement of the U.S. quota (in fact, the U.S. sword fleet has failed to catch its entire quota in recent years due to the many management measures being enforced).
  • The use of more environmentally friendly circle hooks on longlines, which has reduced the U.S. fleet's interaction with sea turtles by 90 percent.

Although the North Atlantic fresh swordfish stock is fully rebuilt today due to effective international actions, international management remains a complicated task. Nevertheless, it is the only adequate and rational option to preserve this high commodity fish.


Current Fresh Swordfish Supply

A BST signature product, our fresh swordfish comes from our own longline fishing vessels, as well as from some of the best fishermen in the North Atlantic swordfish fleet, which fishes from the Gulf of Mexico to the Grand Banks off Newfoundland, depending on the time of year.Fresh Swordfish

Fresh Swordfish Quest

As mentioned last week, the warm summer weather marks the annual fresh swordfish quest back to the North East to feed. Therefore, the Iron Maiden and the Iron Lady will be fishing both Georges Bank and the Grand Banks. We expect a solid catch of fresh swordfish out of both vessels to initiate the season in local and Canadian waters.

This time of year starts to bring in some of the best quality fresh swordfish we see annually while fishing these Northeast coast waters. The fish are beautiful, healthy fish and come to us as fresh as it gets. Tight, bright red bloodlines are a token to their quality.


Fresh Swordfish From Their Natural Migration

A BST signature product, our fresh swordfish comes from our own longline fishing vessels, as well as from some of the best fishermen in the North Atlantic swordfish fleet, which fishes from the Gulf of Mexico to the Grand Banks off Newfoundland, depending on the time of year.

Fresh Swordfish From Across the Globe

Fresh SwordfishBoston Sword & Tuna fishing vessels – the Iron Maiden and the Iron Lady – and the rest of the local East Coast Fleet have been following the fresh swordfish through their natural migration throughout the winter. The colder weather marks the annual swordfish quest to spawn in warmer waters before returning back to the North East by summertime to feed. The crews have been concentrating their efforts between the offshore mid-Atlantic ridge down to the Florida Keys and will continue there until late spring.

Along with the mid-Atlantic warm water fish we supplement our supply with, we have been importing fresh swordfish from other parts of the world including: Australia, South Africa, Costa Rica, etc. Hawaiian tuna is a very high demand product during these cold weather months, and BST is currently receiving a lot of beautiful west coast fish from Hawaii and the California Fleet. 

The Iron Maiden and the Iron Lady are continuing their trips to warmer waters, which means we will continue to see more warm water fish. As the summer months roll around the boats will begin fishing the Grand Banks again for the warm weather season in New England.

Fresh Swordfish Supply from the Banks to the Mid-Atlantic

As the seasons change, so do the fishing grounds. Boston Sword & Tuna fishing vessels – the Iron Maiden and the Iron Lady – along with the local East Coast Fleet are now following the fresh swordfish through their natural migration. Winter weather marks the annual fresh swordfish quest to spawn in warmer waters before returning back to the North East by summertime to feed. The crews will be concentrating their efforts between the offshore mid-Atlantic ridge down to the Florida Keys between now and late spring.Fresh Swordfish

Fresh Swordfish From All Over

With the fishing grounds shifting from the Banks to the mid-Atlantic, the fresh swordfish supply will likewise experience a shift. Alongside the mid-Atlantic warm water fish we supplement our supply with, this is the time of year where sword from other parts of the world begin to emerge; including Australians, South Africans, and Costa Ricans amongst others.

The 1st of the year will initiate the annual trips to Hawaii to fish those waters, at which point we will integrate Hawaiian fresh swordfish into our supply. BST is currently receiving a lot of west coast fish from the California Fleet. The Iron Maiden and the Iron Lady are continuing their trips to warmer waters, which means we will be seeing more warm water fish.

Fresh Swordfish & Tuna in Boston - The Iron Lady Returns Home

The Iron Lady returned home to the Boston Waterfront Thursday, October 25, with approximately 30,000 pounds of fresh swordfish and tuna. She was gone for sixteen days, dock-to-dock, making twelve longline sets in the deep waters offshore the canyons south of Nantucket.

Fresh SwordfishFresh Swordfish & Tuna Catch 

The 30,000 pound catch consists of a fairly even split between fresh swordfish and tuna. The majority of tuna reeled-in were yellowfin, with about 20% of them being large, high-value bigeye tuna. Like our swordfish, our tuna are immediately bled and iced, ensuring that they retain their peak freshness. 

Fresh swordfish are available year round, but catches typically reach their climax in the fall when landings are still solid on the East Coast, and the California fishery – which runs from August to January – is in full swing. Each year at this time of the season both species are storing fat. In addition, they are both prolific and reside relatively close to shore. These conditions translate into some of the best quality and lowest priced swordfish and tuna of the year. 

Sword and tuna prices are generally at their annual low point in the fall due to the transition period between summer and the holidays. Wholesale prices for headed and gutted fresh swordfish are under $5 per pound; while tuna prices range from $6 to $9 per pound, depending on the grade. The Iron Lady is returning to sea tomorrow, October 29, to fish in the same general area as it just returned from off the south shores of Nantucket.