09 Apr2005

Ever wonder how some restaurants can be so confident about including citra1certain types of seafood in their menus when your own experience in the markets suggests that the availability of fresh fish (particularly less common fish) is highly erratic? Flash frozen seafood is the answer. The vast majority of top restaurants most probably rely on frozen seafood to bolster their menus and I think I have just found one of their better sources. Citra Mina is a frozen seafood wholesaler and retailer that is based in the seafood rich port of General Santos City (they also have offices in Davao, Cagayan de Oro, and Palawan). Despite its Indonesian name Citra Mina (meaning image of Pisces, or literally, a fish), this is apparently a Filipino based business that has its core in tuna products and has branched out to a very broad line of flash frozen seafood.

On a recent visit to their shop, I was totally impressed by the bank of gleaming glass citra2freezer doors that housed a very neatly displayed array of goods. Let’s start with Tuna products first: the had tuna panga, belly, buntot, cheeks and EYES (yikes!) in addition to beautiful looking top quality yellow fin tuna steaks of around 5 oz in weight. Related tuna products included sausages, burger patties, tocino, soimai, longganisa etc. which I have to admit I was not quite tempted to try just yet. Other interesting finds in these immaculately clean freezers were frozen shrimps, scallops on the half shell, octopus, salmon steaks and smoked salmon, Thai crab sticks, Japanese eel or unagi, trout, and sushi grade fish of all sorts (though I am averse to serving anything pre-frozen as sushi…). They also had several types of bangus products and for me, the best thing was finding swordfish (malasugi) and blue marlin steaks that I have several Western recipes for but are otherwise difficult fish to find fresh in the markets. The first photo above has swordfish, blue marlin and yellow fin tuna steaks in it. They are already pre-cut and frozen to a specific serving size. Personally, I would have liked them thicker than they were but at least they were available, so I won’t quibble.

According to their brochure, Citra Mina seafood is blast or flash frozen to -35 or -40 degrees Celsius to ensure that it is as fresh as possible. citra3To defrost, take the individual servings and put them in the fridge to thaw slowly before using. They do not ever recommend refreezing the products. Prices were quite reasonable at Citra Mina: tuna panga was PHP125/kilo, yellow fin tuna steaks at PHP65 for 195 grams, blue marlin steaks for PHP62 for 8oz, boneless bangus 560 grams for PHP 104 (roughly 15-20% cheaper than Pricesmart), sea bass at PHP215 a kilo, etc. They are located literally outside the fence of the international airport (south end of the runway?) at Access Road, Paranaque, Multinational entrance, with telephone number 541-5852. They have another branch in Sucat but I have not been there. I hope you will be pleasantly surprised by this nice source for frozen seafood.

 

COMMENTS:

  1. CecileJ says:

    Thanks for this info! I went to the Citra Mina in Cagayan de Oro and enjoyed the mesquite flavored salmon fillet. Will hurry to the paranaque outlet this weekend!

    Apr 14, 2005 | 4:41 pm

     
  2. alicia says:

    for those of you who find the store in paranaque just a tad to far, a Citra Mina is scheduled to open later this month on J. Abad St in San JUan. This is off Wilson street near Alex II and Gloria Maris restaurants.

    Jun 9, 2005 | 11:02 am

     
  3. Sandro Sagalongos says:

    I am a tuna enthusiast, especially if it’s from General Santos City, Philippines. I would appreciate if you can give me your Los Angeles, CA location and contact number. Thanks!

    Mar 24, 2006 | 1:30 pm

     
  4. evan t. parreñas says:

    hello. good day. i would just like to know if citra mina has a website. thanx

    Aug 10, 2006 | 11:45 am

     
  5. Marketman says:

    evan, I don’t think they do. A few other folks have asked me but I can’t seem to find one… they should, at least in their kind of business! Sandro, I don’t sell anything. Alicia, thanks for the new store location…

    Aug 10, 2006 | 1:29 pm

     
  6. Jhon Cole says:

    Dear ma’am / Sir,

    I’m an investor connected to foreign country I would like to inquire about your export selling price for Aquatic products more preperably processed ones.

    Respectfully yours,
    Jhon Cole

    Aug 28, 2006 | 9:41 am

     
  7. Marketman says:

    Jhon, I don’t sell anything, I only write about people who do…

    Aug 28, 2006 | 9:48 am

     
  8. Jhon Cole says:

    ok thanks.

    Aug 28, 2006 | 3:47 pm

     
  9. millet says:

    MM, our favorite at citra mina is the “toro” or “tombo” belly, of if that is not available, AA (double A-grade) tuna belly. i have the scales removed (but the skin retaines, as this is delicious), then simply put in foil with some good olive oil, a mixture of herbs, salt and pepper and a sprinkling of soysauce-i bake the whole thing in the turbo broiler for about 30 mins, and it’s always delicious, the belly is the best part for this. i vary the herbs and the sauce, and sometimes add garlic, or lemon, or onions. my next favorite thing at citra mina is their frozen ground tuna, which makes for very good tuna burgers, “meatballs” (beaten eggs, a little flour, chopped scallions,finely grated carrots), fish lumpia a la shanghai (my family loves these with chopped singkamas, scallions, grated carrots and grated cheese!_, etc…great alternatives for your diet now. no malansa smell or taste at all, and when thawed, there is no trace of blood or water in the bag.

    Sep 1, 2006 | 10:51 am

     
  10. ineve says:

    Yummy! I am a seafood lover…. I had no problem of buying those when we were still residing at Cagayan de Oro City. God thanks they do have here. Is there any update of the branch at San Juan, so far I know the way going to Greenhills Mall, is there anyone knows their contact number at San Juan? Please….

    Oct 12, 2006 | 10:09 am

     
  11. mafe says:

    good day guys…there’ll be an exhibit at the World Trade Center this coming May 18-20..It’s entitled International Food Exhibition. Lots and lots of Philippine-based food companies will be showcasing their products. i’m sure Citra Mina is participating..see you there

    Apr 25, 2007 | 2:32 pm

     
  12. helen says:

    contact number in san juan is 725-8018.. they have branches in sucat paranaque 842-7542 and multinational 541-5852. also, in cebu, davao, gensan, marbel, palawan, cagayan de oro and valencia.

    May 28, 2007 | 6:55 pm

     
  13. Virginia Galalrdo says:

    I will be on vacation in Manila and Cagayan de Oro City come July 8th. I look forward to find Citra Mina to buy fish like tuna and blue marlin to bring back here in the United States. I wonder how much per kilo is tuna and blue marlin now. Can somebody please let me know? Thank you.

    Jun 24, 2007 | 6:51 am

     
  14. Onins says:

    I am a fan of CitraMina here in Cebu. Everything is just right for me and they are indeed priced reasonably. One thing, they should open earlier, maybe 6AM? not 8:30 or later!

    Jun 30, 2007 | 7:59 pm

     
  15. blessy says:

    maam/sir,

    i love citra mina! i introduced it to the health professionals i’ve known.. gussssshhhhh! they amazed the products, its’ quality! its’ freshness! & its’ cleanliness! “keep it up”!

    Maam thank you…

    Aug 27, 2007 | 8:56 pm

     
  16. Fe Panti says:

    how can i get products,im from cavite.

    thanks,
    fe

    Sep 1, 2007 | 1:17 pm

     
  17. victor says:

    I am finding supplier of seafood product, my market is in chinatown, got a big place in chinatown selling seafood, i am looking for a join venture in business, presently i am selling live seafood such as lobster, king crab, eel, sharks and other high end seafood product, i am looking into process food to add to my line of product, i got ready market, email me so that we can sit down and talk.

    Oct 14, 2007 | 9:40 am

     
  18. evan parrenas says:

    hello victor, this is evan. i am from general santos city- tuna capital of the philippines. i supply tuna and tuna value added products to some small buyers in cebu and manila. maybe we could arrange some business lines. thanx. email me evan_von@yahoo.com; you can also contact me in my skype evan_von.

    Apr 23, 2008 | 2:12 pm

     
  19. evan parrenas says:

    Sir Marketman, as stated above, Victor is looking for supplier, asking to email him.. in reference to that, can i ask for victor’s email? i think he thought that his email (the one required when leaving a comment) will automatically appear on his comment.. thanx sir marketman, i would really appreciate it.

    Apr 23, 2008 | 2:22 pm

     
  20. powell says:

    Good day,

    We are supplying seafoods such as king crabs, lapu lapu, and prawns from Zamboanga. My email is powell_marquez@yahoo.com if anyone is interested. Thanks.

    Apr 29, 2008 | 10:51 am

     
  21. rosemee mc. avila says:

    hi!
    goodday! my family loves citra mina.do you have an email address where we can contact you guys for interested to open a franchise in zamboanga or iligan city? please give us feedback since my uncle would like to open one. how about in the middle east?
    please email me ASAP! mc_oy72000@yahoo.com rosemeeavila@yahoo.com

    Jun 15, 2008 | 10:38 pm

     
  22. Jefferson Ngo says:

    hi, i am a fish supplier in malabon, metro manila. i am looking for people who are interested in purchasing in volumes, local or export. we have a wide variety of fish like blue marlin tuna, grouper etc… mostly caught in palawan, philippines. we also do fillet if requested. you can email me at champ.ngo@gmail.com

    Jul 12, 2008 | 1:09 pm

     
  23. Elvin says:

    When will the Citra Mina in Mandaue City, Cebu have Smoked Boneless Bangus again?

    Sep 18, 2008 | 8:48 pm

     
  24. Terry Sarmiento says:

    Hello. Just in case anyone is looking for a supplier of the now famous CREAM DORY or PANGASAIUS.. and other fish products please feel free to call me at 09178812125=)

    Feb 5, 2009 | 11:09 am

     
  25. jess sy says:

    hello there…im from a flexible plastic manufacturing. we’re working with citra mina group of companies as a vacuum plastic supplier. If there’s anyone out there who’s interested or have any queries regarding supplier of vacuum plastic, you can contact me @ 09228512484 or 09053017990. we do only projects by volume. I can assure you that we are @ reasonable price and of good quality plastics.
    thanks.

    Apr 18, 2009 | 8:22 pm

     
  26. jess sy says:

    by the way, the name of our company is GILVAN PACKAGING CORPORATION. thanks.

    Apr 18, 2009 | 8:23 pm

     
  27. ariel says:

    Do you have citra mina in Singapore? how can we order from here? kindly contact me at lexusxtreme@yahoo.com if possible. thanks-

    Apr 22, 2009 | 5:22 pm

     
  28. Kazuhiro Hamada says:

    I am in Manila and went to your store in Greenhill today to find out you had moved to somewhere but no one around the vicinity knows the new address. I searched your web site but your HP do not have the address either. Please tell me where is your shop now in manila?

    Kazuhiro Hamada

    Jul 6, 2009 | 1:20 pm

     
  29. Joanna says:

    Hi there. I own a pub in BF Homes, Paranaque and I love your scallop nuggets. Unfortunately, after purchasing just a couple of times, (and myself adding it to my menu), there seems to be a shortage of this item. My customers love them and I can’t seem to get anything like it anywhere. HELP!!

    Jul 15, 2009 | 5:20 pm

     
  30. Ruggo Rivero says:

    Hi! I just want to ask about your new address here in manila. I went to your store in San Juan but it was already closed. I would appreciate if you could send me your new address. Thank you.

    Aug 11, 2009 | 10:24 am

     
  31. shiela jimenez says:

    Hi, may i inquire if it is possible for us to market your product here in Meycauayan, Bulacan. It is our first time to venture in this business Can you help us or give any suggestion. Thanks and God bless you.

    Sep 8, 2009 | 10:18 pm

     
  32. rina monroy says:

    Can you send me your pricelist through my email add rinammonroy@yahoo.com

    Sep 10, 2009 | 4:05 pm

     
 

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