In Western Europe crab meat is derived primarily from the species Cancer pagurus. Cancer pagurus is a large crab noted for the sweet, delicate flavor of its meat. It is also known as The 'Brown Crab' and the 'Common' or 'Edible Crab'. The best grade of Crab Meat is 'handpicked' - this refers to the method by which the crab has been processed (by hand) and ensures the flavor of the crab meat is unadulterated. By contrast 'machine processed crab' is produced by using water or air to blast the crab meat from the shell which had a detrimental effect on the flavor.
The Brown Crab contains two 'grades' of meat: White Meat from the claws and legs is low in fat and high in protein, it has a delicate, sweet flavor. Brown Meat from the body has a higher natural fat content, but is also extremely high in Omega-3.
In many fisheries, crab meat is harvested by declawing of crabs. This is the process whereby one or both claws of a live crab are manually pulled off and the animal is then returned to the water. The practice is defended because some crabs can naturally autotomise (shed) limbs and then about a year later after a series of moults, regenerate these limbs. It is argued that declawing therefore provides a sustainable fishery, however, declawing can lead to 47% mortality and negative effects on feeding behaviour.
For the U.S. market the meat of crabs comes in different grades, depending on which part of the crab's body it comes from and the overall size of the crab the meat is taken from.
Read more about this topic: Crab Meat
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Famous quotes containing the word grades:
“There are no grades of vanity, there are only grades of ability in concealing it.”
—Mark Twain [Samuel Langhorne Clemens] (18351910)
“He suggested that there might be men of genius in the lowest grades of life, however permanently humble and illiterate, who take their own view always, or do not pretend to see at all; who are as bottomless even as Walden Pond was thought to be, though they may be dark and muddy.”
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“Kindliness seems to exist primarily as an animal instinct, so deeply rooted that mental degeneracy, which works from the top down, does not destroy it until the mind sinks to the lower grades of idiocy.”
—Charles Horton Cooley (18641929)