Monthly Archives: July 2023


Desert Aquaculture: Bringing Barramundi, an Australian Fish, to Arizona 

Seattle Fish Company is proud to source Desert Springs Barramundi from a land-based farm in Arizona. While the fish is native to Australia, the Barramundi is happily grown in Arizona due to the desert heat and ideal water temperature. Desert Springs showcases the innovation within the seafood industry to creatively think of how and where we can raise fish. 

An Australian farm, Mainstream Aquaculture, shared the unique skills and technology of growing Barramundi with the local aquaculture industry of Southwest Arizona. Tad Smyth and his multi-generational farm was able to learn from Mainstream how to grow these Australian-native finfish. With the purchase of the Arizona site, Mainstream was able to form revolutionary farming practices to sustainably raise the Barramundi in the Arizona Desert. 

The fish are grown in Agua Caliente which is a geothermally heated spring that allows the fish to be grown year round in constant warm-water temperatures. While Agua Caliente might differ from the rainforest/reef waters in Australia, the similarity in water temperature and salinity creates a parallel Barramundi. 

Arizona fish facilities are categorized as either warm or cold. Trout, for example, would be cold while Barramundi prefers warm temperatures. Once known for its detoxifying hot springs, Agua Caliente is now the home of the freshest seafood in Arizona! 

The water is salty because it is fed from the Colorado River Aquifer. The resulting food product has a succulent, buttery finish and excellent natural fat content. It is a delicious and versatile fish that can be used across a wide range of cuisines, dishes, and cooking styles with its naturally mild taste and light texture. 

In addition to being delicious, Barramundi is a great product to try from SFC because of its small carbon footprint and low food miles. By taking an imported fish and instead domestically farming it, it shortens the supply chain and helps the environment. This product is harvested on demand and immediately ice chilled, prior to being shipped, ensuring the freshest and highest quality is arriving at Seattle Fish.  

Fish farming or aquaculture has recently started to attract interest in Arizona. Aquaculture is generally recognized as a growth industry, and is seen as a fast-growing and lucrative sector by economists. While desert aquaculture is lesser known, its practice and potential is being actively explored. 

Seattle Fish is grateful to have Desert Springs in our product catalog because it highlights the growth opportunities within aquaculture and pushes us to innovate new ideas and possibilities within the farming sector. If you’d like to learn more, talk to your sales rep!