Cold Water Shrimp

Pandalus jordani, Pandalus borealis

Market Name(s): Coldwater shrimp, Northern pink shrimp, ocean shrimp

Contact Purchasing
Cold Water Shrimp
  • Primary Source: Western Canada, Washington, Oregon, and California
  • Season: Pacific Northwest: April 1 – October 31; Frozen product available year-round.
  • Primary Fishing Method: Trawl

Size Range:

Max Size: 6.5 inches

Product forms:

FROZEN: Cooked, peeled shrimp meats (90/500 count); whole, raw and cooked.

Storage & Handling

Most shrimp meat is sold IQF in 5-lb. bags. Properly glazed, frozen product will keep for 18-24 months, while inadequate glazing can lead to freezer burn. Fresh product has a shelf life of 5 to 7 days.

Cooking Suggestions

These small pink shrimp, tender and more intensely flavored than warmwater shrimp, are sold almost exclusively frozen cooked. The small size (and the fact that they’re already cooked and peeled) makes them ideal for shrimp cocktails, salads, casseroles, quiches and omelettes. When adding coldwater shrimp to a hot dish, add them at the last minute, though, as they will dry out.

Selling Points

  • Because they’re already cooked and peeled, coldwater shrimp meat is one of the world’s most convenient seafoods.
  • Because of their sweet flavor and bright, pink color, cooked and peeled coldwater shrimp meat is perfect for sandwiches, salads and other cold dishes.
  • IQF products allow users to use only as much as needed at a time.


  • Slimy or “glassy” shrimp is a sign of phosphate abuse.
  • Overuse of phosphates in processing can also lead to excessive water retention.
  • Ammonia odor indicates shrimp is decomposed.
  • Pieces of legs and shell in shrimp meat.
  • Yellowing around the neck is a sign shrimp was held too long before processing.
  • As with all irregularly shaped IQF products, inconsistent glazing can lead to freezer burn and/or gross/net weight issues.

The Pacific Advantage

  • Processed fresh off the boat
  • State of the art processing facilities
  • USDC and MSC certified facilities
  • Pacific Seafood industry leading product traceability system assuring food safety
  • Sustainable Fishery and MSC Certified
  • Cryogenically flash frozen locking in fresh flavor and texture
  • Harvested and processed in the USA


Although they’re smaller than most warmwater shrimp and account for a similarly sized percentage of global shrimp landings, coldwater or Pandalid shrimp are highly regarded for their affordability, versatility and above all, clean, sweet flavor. On a salad, in a shrimp roll or even as whole cooked peel ‘n eats, they offer an excellent alternative that has more flavor than their warmwater cousins.

The world’s total catch of coldwater shrimp has been increasing in recent years; the leading producers are Canada, Greenland, Norway and the United States. Found in the cold waters off northern North America and Northern Europe, coldwater shrimp catches are dominated by two species, Pandalus jordani and Pandalus borealis.

P. borealis account for 80-90% of the global catch of coldwater shrimp. Ranging from New England to Greenland to Northern Europe, they produce 150/250 and larger. The major coldwater-shrimp resource in the Pacific is P. jordani. Ranging from Northern California to Southeast Alaska, can produce peeled meats that are sold as 250/350s and 350/500s

Unlike warmwater shrimp, which rarely live more than a year, coldwater shrimp only reach a harvestable size after 1 year and can live for 3 to 4 years.

Because they’re primarily deepwater animals, coldwater shrimp do not ingest mud, sand, etc., with their food, one reason their veins are clearer than those of warmwater shrimp.

Coldwater shrimp can be distinguished from like-sized warmwater shrimp because they have a longer rostrum (beak) and claws on one pair of feet instead of three.

Split between New England and the Pacific Northwest, U.S. catches of coldwater shrimp fluctuate greatly. In recent years, Pacific catches have averaged 55 million pounds.

Frozen cooked and peeled coldwater shrimpmeat is available year-round; fresh product is available seasonally based on region: April to October on the West Coast.

While P. borealis and P. jordani dominate the world market for coldwater shrimp, several other species, including spot shrimp, sidestripes, etc., are available on a limited basis. Caught in traps in the Pacific Northwest and Alaska, these species typically run much larger than typical coldwater pinks.