Fish Processing Yields (San Diego) - Data Only

matt fe2o3

Newbie
Dec 23, 2020
54
129
San Leandro
Name
Matt
Boat
BT 101
Hi folks, as new to SD long range / mexico fishing there were plenty of questions overall that became answered, one of course was fish processing, logistics and cost.

Purpose of this thread is not to praise or flame any processor, rather to provide data sets for folks to see what yields and costs are. I'm all for praise where appropriate - and flame - well sometimes stuff happens - but let's leave that to other posts.

None of this is confidential or secret - rates are well known, however examples are helpful. I like helpful.

I'll start:

3 day Excel trip June 2021. Two of us. 6 fish total, two over 100#. Used Fisherman's Processing. Combined the catch.

Reservations ahead and 1# packs, 5 mil bag option, w/bellies and collars, frozen and shipped SWA cargo to OAK.

Total gross weight to processor at landing: 362# ALL bluefin tuna.

Total shipment weight (including airline boxes and ice packs): 205# in four basically 17x16x24" boxes.

Coolers/boxes and ice packs likely 50 pounds total (I'll weight them and edit) but this seems about right. so net fish in 5mil bags: 155#.

Basically 43%. I assume it's higher than average because we wanted the collars.

Cost:

1.45/# plus total of 31$ for collars: 555.90.
Four airline cooler/shipping boxes and handling to airport: 244.00
Total processing: $799.90

Airfreight San Diego to Oakland: 208.52. Paid at destination.

Total all in processing/shipping: $1,008.42 or basically $6.50 per pound.

So in keeping this post non performance review related I will say the box cost is very typical and was expected. The air freight was pretty standard and fast, four hours and change from delivery to SD airport to available at OAK. The local SD delivery charge to the airport was 30$ included in the above.

For MY purposes shipping was a much better time/cost option than a return drive to San Diego. I will keep the coolers and boxes for future use. Playing that forward the average cost will go down.

Hope this helps folks looking at costs, yields and shipping. Please add your experience - but please let's keep it data/cost, not praise and/or flame here. Cheers!
 
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Cubeye

I Post A Lot But I Can't Edit This
Jan 26, 2007
3,854
2,964
Los Angeles
Name
Kub
Boat
17' Gregor
Hi folks, as new to SD long range / mexico fishing there were plenty of questions overall that became answered, one of course was fish processing, logistics and cost.

Purpose of this thread is not to praise or flame any processor, rather to provide data sets for folks to see what yields and costs are. I'm all for praise where appropriate - and flame - well sometimes stuff happens - but let's leave that to other posts.

None of this is confidential or secret - rates are well known, however examples are helpful. I like helpful.

I'll start:

3 day Excel trip June 2021. Two of us. 6 fish total, two over 100#. Used Fisherman's Processing. Combined the catch.

Reservations ahead and 1# packs, 5 mil bag option, w/bellies and collars, frozen and shipped SWA cargo to OAK.

Total gross weight to processor at landing: 362#

Total shipment weight (including airline boxes and ice packs): 205# in four basically 17x16x24" boxes.

Coolers/boxes and ice packs likely 50 pounds total (I'll weight them and edit) but this seems about right. so net fish in 5mil bags: 155#.

Basically 43%. I assume it's higher than average because we wanted the collars.

Cost:

1.45/# plus total of 31$ for collars: 555.90.
Four airline cooler/shipping boxes and handling to airport: 244.00
Total processing: $799.90

Airfreight San Diego to Oakland: 208.52. Paid at destination.

Total all in processing/shipping: $1,008.42 or basically $6.50 per pound.

So in keeping this post non performance review related I will say the box cost is very typical and was expected. The air freight was pretty standard and fast, four hours and change from delivery to SD airport to available at OAK. The local SD delivery charge to the airport was 30$ included in the above.

For MY purposes shipping was a much better time/cost option than a return drive to San Diego. I will keep the coolers and boxes for future use. Playing that forward the average cost will go down.

Hope this helps folks looking at costs, yields and shipping. Please add your experience - but please let's keep it data/cost, not praise and/or flame here. Cheers!
Thanks for the information.

Shall we assume your fish were all bluefin? Two over 100#. What were the approximate sizes of the others?
 
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Yes all bluefin - thanks for pointing out that. I'll edit above.
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azbaseball

Member
Apr 2, 2007
743
1,539
la mesa ca
Name
mike de vito
Boat
20ft nitro
total weight 362
Thanks for the information.

Shall we assume your fish were all bluefin? Two over 100#. What were the approximate sizes of the others?
minus 200 162 divided by 4 = 40.5 pounds average fairly good guess
 
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surfgoose

active geezer
  • Jul 29, 2010
    3,262
    5,386
    Long Beach, CA, USA
    Name
    Gary
    Boat
    whichever has the longest bunk
    Thanks for the report/info. Congrats on a great trip! You are new to extended trips, but you did very well! Enjoy your bluefin. The fish are being handled excellently by the boats for the past handful of years, and you now have about a hundred and fifty pounds of sushi-grade bluefin to enjoy and share. And just so you know, the processing will allow you to freeze it until next spring with no ill effects. So you already are well ahead on your holiday shopping! Everybody smiles when you bring them bluefin.
     
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    Brad I

    Common Sense Isn't Common Enough
    Jun 20, 2015
    1,819
    2,314
    San Fernando Valley
    Name
    Brad I
    Boat
    Nope
    Over the years, I've developed the following rules of thumb that work pretty well:

    1 qt of cooler volume holds about 3/4# of frozen tuna fillets. 250# live weight of smaller (up to about 40#) fish just fits in a 100 qt cooler.

    For freezer space, another rule of thumb is that one cubic foot holds 16-17# of frozen tuna fillets. 1 qt = .033 cubic feet. Warning--most freezers overstate their actual usable capacity,

    This is packaged, frozen, tuna. Collars not included. Packages were individually placed in coolers somewhat efficiently, not just dumped in. Flat fish (such as dorado) could probably be packed tighter. Fresh fish could be packed tighter, but with added ice, you'd probably come out similar to the frozen. Larger containers held more per quart than did smaller containers.
     
    matt fe2o3
    matt fe2o3
    I was able to stuff everything into a new 7 cu-ft chest freezer and almost ran out of room! I had pre-cooled the freezer and prior to loading the frozen fish it was 1/3 full of frozen water bottles for better part of a week to get temp down and stable.
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    Peteb

    newbie my ass
    Nov 30, 2010
    731
    222
    Lake Havasu City, Az
    Name
    Pete
    Boat
    None
    Ial
    Hi folks, as new to SD long range / mexico fishing there were plenty of questions overall that became answered, one of course was fish processing, logistics and cost.

    Purpose of this thread is not to praise or flame any processor, rather to provide data sets for folks to see what yields and costs are. I'm all for praise where appropriate - and flame - well sometimes stuff happens - but let's leave that to other posts.

    None of this is confidential or secret - rates are well known, however examples are helpful. I like helpful.

    I'll start:

    3 day Excel trip June 2021. Two of us. 6 fish total, two over 100#. Used Fisherman's Processing. Combined the catch.

    Reservations ahead and 1# packs, 5 mil bag option, w/bellies and collars, frozen and shipped SWA cargo to OAK.

    Total gross weight to processor at landing: 362#

    Total shipment weight (including airline boxes and ice packs): 205# in four basically 17x16x24" boxes.

    Coolers/boxes and ice packs likely 50 pounds total (I'll weight them and edit) but this seems about right. so net fish in 5mil bags: 155#.

    Basically 43%. I assume it's higher than average because we wanted the collars.

    Cost:

    1.45/# plus total of 31$ for collars: 555.90.
    Four airline cooler/shipping boxes and handling to airport: 244.00
    Total processing: $799.90

    Airfreight San Diego to Oakland: 208.52. Paid at destination.

    Total all in processing/shipping: $1,008.42 or basically $6.50 per pound.

    So in keeping this post non performance review related I will say the box cost is very typical and was expected. The air freight was pretty standard and fast, four hours and change from delivery to SD airport to available at OAK. The local SD delivery charge to the airport was 30$ included in the above.

    For MY purposes shipping was a much better time/cost option than a return drive to San Diego. I will keep the coolers and boxes for future use. Playing that forward the average cost will go down.

    Hope this helps folks looking at costs, yields and shipping. Please add your experience - but please let's keep it data/cost, not praise and/or flame here. Cheers!
    I usually use 5 Star. Last year prices for 5 ml bags was a little [email protected] $1.25 per pound. With reservations they picked it up at the dock had it ready to go by 9am the following day. I'm assuming you drove down and back? I'm too old to drive any distance after days on the water so always get a room for the night when we get in. Might save you a few $.
     
    matt fe2o3
    matt fe2o3
    I did drive down for the trip, overnighted in Solvang then picked my son up in LA on the way and we stayed at the Best Western the night before. I'm getting older too and don't like to rush.

    Edit, FP did post a June rate increase to 1.45 for 5 mil bags- I knew about that well in advance - it was tied to local wage ordinances.
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    Pitchinwedge

    Member
  • Aug 7, 2016
    760
    488
    So Cal
    Name
    Sammie
    Boat
    None
    What's the effect on yield due to gaff shots, multiple gaff shots, and gaff shots in the wrong places? Consider at least one big rusty hook getting slammed into the meat of a writhing animal. Have to believe the damage will be more extensive than just the immediate vicinity of the puncture, no?
     
    matt fe2o3
    matt fe2o3
    Good question. I imagine upwards of a couple pounds per mid body gaff at worst.
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    JamesZ

    Newbie
    Jun 25, 2018
    66
    77
    43
    Montana
    Name
    James Zachary
    Boat
    Kenner 23
    Holy hell. That was the price of a 6-8 day trip not as long ago as it seems. (I'm getting old 😂) I've not got to be on the salt in over six years. (Accident. Surgeries. All that bs. Don't break ANYTHING spinal. Trust me. Not worth it) But I can finally see light on the horizon. When I can finally get back down there and do my thing. I'm just thanking my lucky stars that I learned how to take care of Tuna, YT, Dorado, Wahoo, Grouper, Halibut etc as a kid. It always felt kinda primal doing it myself. I'm not cheap. I just have to be more careful about spending money now than I had to be in the past. When you add everything up. Even the little stuff helps. Now..That I'm about ready to jump back in the saddle. LET'S GET THE ISLANDS OPENED BACK UP! 😂😭😂
     
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    JamesZ

    Newbie
    Jun 25, 2018
    66
    77
    43
    Montana
    Name
    James Zachary
    Boat
    Kenner 23
    What's the effect on yield due to gaff shots, multiple gaff shots, and gaff shots in the wrong places? Consider at least one big rusty hook getting slammed into the meat of a writhing animal. Have to believe the damage will be more extensive than just the immediate vicinity of the puncture, no?
    Excellent point. People rarely think about bloodshot meat. I cringe when I see nothing but meat shots.
     
    May 8, 2020
    435
    342
    Point Loma
    Name
    Troy
    Boat
    Fun Ones
    Gaff shots on smaller fish can really fk up the yield of meat. The typically yield of smaller fish is like 30% normally, mess up a gaff shot and there goes up to a pound of meat on smaller tunas. Big tunas make a difference… you start seeing 40-45% yields with kept collars.
     
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    Yellowtail Dan

    I Post A Lot But I Can't Edit This
  • Apr 10, 2006
    3,767
    4,340
    53
    Roseville Ca
    Name
    Dan
    Boat
    Excel, American Angler
    Excellent post, thank you for reminding me why I drive and bring my fish back frozen in 3 big coolers with dry ice on top in each. I get a room and crash the day we get back and pick up my fish the next morning when 5 star opens, dry ice is right down the street. Get on the road and I'm home 6-7 hours later
     
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    I suspect that's what I'll do next time since I have the cooler/boxes now. I actually had a whole robust stash of them from LA Crawfish - but the wife got on a cleaning and clutter removal kick and tossed them....
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    Peteb

    newbie my ass
    Nov 30, 2010
    731
    222
    Lake Havasu City, Az
    Name
    Pete
    Boat
    None
    Holy hell. That was the price of a 6-8 day trip not as long ago as it seems. (I'm getting old 😂) I've not got to be on the salt in over six years. (Accident. Surgeries. All that bs. Don't break ANYTHING spinal. Trust me. Not worth it) But I can finally see light on the horizon. When I can finally get back down there and do my thing. I'm just thanking my lucky stars that I learned how to take care of Tuna, YT, Dorado, Wahoo, Grouper, Halibut etc as a kid. It always felt kinda primal doing it myself. I'm not cheap. I just have to be more careful about spending money now than I had to be in the past. When you add everything up. Even the little stuff helps. Now..That I'm about ready to jump back in the saddle. LET'S GET THE ISLANDS OPENED BACK UP! 😂😭😂
    I too don't mind cleaning my own catch BUT it's 123 degrees at my house in Lake Havasu City as I type this. No way in hell I'm cleaning fish in my driveway.
     
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    tunakillerjoe1

    I Should Upgrade My Account
  • Jul 24, 2017
    1,080
    1,046
    64
    San Diego, Calif
    Name
    Joseph Gratteau
    Boat
    Valco Westcoaster 150'
    One BFT, #30.2 lbs, cut up at home by me yielded 57%. No collars, small belly piece, no blood line or waste. I would guess bigger fish yield more. Update coming next week-
     
    RideHPD
    RideHPD
    That's almost exactly my yield on whole fish for BFT up to low-mid 100s. I think my average across the handful I've tracked has been 58%, bumping up to 65% for gill & gutted fish. Just cleaned and portioned quartered loins, excluding collars and carcass spoonings.
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    kevina

    I Post A Lot But I Can't Edit This
  • Sep 10, 2006
    2,866
    2,346
    94
    redondo beach
    Name
    kev
    Boat
    25' aqua sport
    Hi folks, as new to SD long range / mexico fishing there were plenty of questions overall that became answered, one of course was fish processing, logistics and cost.

    Purpose of this thread is not to praise or flame any processor, rather to provide data sets for folks to see what yields and costs are. I'm all for praise where appropriate - and flame - well sometimes stuff happens - but let's leave that to other posts.

    None of this is confidential or secret - rates are well known, however examples are helpful. I like helpful.

    I'll start:

    3 day Excel trip June 2021. Two of us. 6 fish total, two over 100#. Used Fisherman's Processing. Combined the catch.

    Reservations ahead and 1# packs, 5 mil bag option, w/bellies and collars, frozen and shipped SWA cargo to OAK.

    Total gross weight to processor at landing: 362# ALL bluefin tuna.

    Total shipment weight (including airline boxes and ice packs): 205# in four basically 17x16x24" boxes.

    Coolers/boxes and ice packs likely 50 pounds total (I'll weight them and edit) but this seems about right. so net fish in 5mil bags: 155#.

    Basically 43%. I assume it's higher than average because we wanted the collars.

    Cost:

    1.45/# plus total of 31$ for collars: 555.90.
    Four airline cooler/shipping boxes and handling to airport: 244.00
    Total processing: $799.90

    Airfreight San Diego to Oakland: 208.52. Paid at destination.

    Total all in processing/shipping: $1,008.42 or basically $6.50 per pound.

    So in keeping this post non performance review related I will say the box cost is very typical and was expected. The air freight was pretty standard and fast, four hours and change from delivery to SD airport to available at OAK. The local SD delivery charge to the airport was 30$ included in the above.

    For MY purposes shipping was a much better time/cost option than a return drive to San Diego. I will keep the coolers and boxes for future use. Playing that forward the average cost will go down.

    Hope this helps folks looking at costs, yields and shipping. Please add your experience - but please let's keep it data/cost, not praise and/or flame here. Cheers!
    That may not reflect the actuall yield to lbs of fish. Did the Boat Gill and Gut the fish when first caught??? If so, Those yield numbers would be way off.
     
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    The Fishing Cholo

    Almost A Member
    Feb 24, 2019
    130
    54
    44
    East Los Angeles
    Name
    The Fishing Cholo
    Boat
    14ft Klamath "SOLD IT"
    Hi folks, as new to SD long range / mexico fishing there were plenty of questions overall that became answered, one of course was fish processing, logistics and cost.

    Purpose of this thread is not to praise or flame any processor, rather to provide data sets for folks to see what yields and costs are. I'm all for praise where appropriate - and flame - well sometimes stuff happens - but let's leave that to other posts.

    None of this is confidential or secret - rates are well known, however examples are helpful. I like helpful.

    I'll start:

    3 day Excel trip June 2021. Two of us. 6 fish total, two over 100#. Used Fisherman's Processing. Combined the catch.

    Reservations ahead and 1# packs, 5 mil bag option, w/bellies and collars, frozen and shipped SWA cargo to OAK.

    Total gross weight to processor at landing: 362# ALL bluefin tuna.

    Total shipment weight (including airline boxes and ice packs): 205# in four basically 17x16x24" boxes.

    Coolers/boxes and ice packs likely 50 pounds total (I'll weight them and edit) but this seems about right. so net fish in 5mil bags: 155#.

    Basically 43%. I assume it's higher than average because we wanted the collars.

    Cost:

    1.45/# plus total of 31$ for collars: 555.90.
    Four airline cooler/shipping boxes and handling to airport: 244.00
    Total processing: $799.90

    Airfreight San Diego to Oakland: 208.52. Paid at destination.

    Total all in processing/shipping: $1,008.42 or basically $6.50 per pound.

    So in keeping this post non performance review related I will say the box cost is very typical and was expected. The air freight was pretty standard and fast, four hours and change from delivery to SD airport to available at OAK. The local SD delivery charge to the airport was 30$ included in the above.

    For MY purposes shipping was a much better time/cost option than a return drive to San Diego. I will keep the coolers and boxes for future use. Playing that forward the average cost will go down.

    Hope this helps folks looking at costs, yields and shipping. Please add your experience - but please let's keep it data/cost, not praise and/or flame here. Cheers!
    They will use your fish they kept as samples.On the next fishing expo.
     
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    Feb 11, 2021
    6
    3
    64
    San Francisco
    Name
    Martin Alexander
    Boat
    SF and SDiego area Party Boats
    Excellent post, thank you for reminding me why I drive and bring my fish back frozen in 3 big coolers with dry ice on top in each. I get a room and crash the day we get back and pick up my fish the next morning when 5 star opens, dry ice is right down the street. Get on the road and I'm home 6-7 hours later
    Thanks. I brought coolers to SDiego but went with 5Star cause I was tired and didn't want to deal with the rigamarole. They said 3 week wait period (!) as they are so backed up. They will ship on Southwest to SFO and I will get my Dorado and Yellows. Next time (early November 3 day), I'll wait it out if possible and bring back the processed fish in my SUV
     
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    Feb 11, 2021
    6
    3
    64
    San Francisco
    Name
    Martin Alexander
    Boat
    SF and SDiego area Party Boats
    As you may be finding out, OUR sport can be very expensive.
    How true! But I look at it as therapy for me. In life we pay one way or another
     
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    matt fe2o3
    matt fe2o3
    Meh, I see no real cost to this sport. Compare it to Disneyland for two for three days with hotel, drinks and meals. This is mOar better and much cheaper!
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