Unima’s award-winning shrimp developed to offer both convenience and quality

Unima Chairman and CEO Amyne Ismail

Unima Distribution, a provider of Madagascar shrimp to foodservice businesses, managed to take home two separate Seafood Excellence Global awards with its Organic Body-Peeled Madagascar Shrimp.

Unima won a special distinction for convenience and the Best Hotel/Restaurant/Catering (HORECA) Product at the awards, which were presented at Seafood Expo Global on 25 April in Barcelona, Spain.

Unima Chairman and CEO Amyne Ismail said the Europe-focused product was created to meld quality with convenience. 

“In Southern Europe, we eat shrimp with the eyes, we like to see the head. It’s a sign of freshness,” Ismail said. “If you go above France, Spain, and Portugal, people want a more-convenient product. We wanted to combine the two components, head-on and convenience.”

Chefs get the added convenience of a product that doesn’t need to be peeled, while still being able to use the head for other dishes. In this way, the product appeals to customers outside Southern Europe, but is still welcomed into restaurants in France and Spain where customers expect shrimp to come with the head on, Ismail said.

“A normal chef in a restaurant, you propose to them not to peel it for the customers, they really like the concept,” Ismail said. 

The company’s Organic Body-Peeled Madagascar Shrimp has earned France’s Label Rouge – a French certification for distinguished food origin and taste. Unima’s new product is currently the only shrimp the world that has earned the right to carry Label Rouge on its packaging, and it’s also the only non-European product, according to Ismael. 

“We have to guarantee that our shrimp has a unique crispiness, juiciness, that it’s the best of the industry,” Ismail said.

All of these requirements mean added effort and therefore cost, Ismail acknowledged. A farmed shrimp requires ... 

Photo by Chris Chase/SeafoodSource

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