Mexico ranks among the top 10 tilapia producers in the world

Chiapas, Jalisco, Michoacán, Sinaloa and Sonora are the main tilapia producing states in Mexico.

Mexico ranks among the top 10 tilapia producers in the world
Tilapia. Photo by Rosalind Chang / Unsplash

Fish is a food rich in nutrients such as protein, vitamins, minerals, and fatty acids. Such is the case of tilapia - also known as mojarra, whose meat is white, neutral in taste, with high nutritional levels, and easily accessible to Mexicans, resulting in one of the fishes that are easy to prepare and can be consumed in the daily diet.

Tilapia is a fish that inhabits the tropical regions of the world, which is where it finds the right conditions for growth and reproduction. The characteristics of high resistance and good growth have made it one of the main species cultivated in the world, with China, Egypt, and the Philippines being the main producers worldwide.

Tilapia is the second most important aquaculture production in the world and Mexico is the ninth-largest producer of tilapia, representing 94.3 percent of the national fishery for the species.

Tilapia farming has been popularized because of its qualities: its meat is excellent in taste, it has rapid growth, great resistance, high reproductive capacity, and adaptation to living in captive conditions. Its production is mainly destined for human consumption, which has proven to be an important component of the economy in some regions of Mexico.

Tilapia is present in practically all of Mexico, among the main producers are the states of Chiapas, Jalisco, Michoacan, Sinaloa, and Sonora. Therefore, it not only represents a commercial activity but also plays an important role in improving the diet of Mexicans.

Among its nutritional properties, the presence of Omega-3 fatty acids, which are healthy for the heart and high in protein, stands out. It provides vitamins B, D, and E, whose benefits help to care for the skin. It also has phosphorus and calcium, which help strengthen bones.

Tilapia is low-calorie meat and a source of DHA, a fatty acid needed in pregnancy, since it helps the development of the central nervous system, brain and eyes, strengthening the cognitive development of the baby.

Although there are tilapia farms in the country to produce it, this protein is also imported mainly from China, which is frozen and shipped to Mexico. Therefore, it is recommended to consume Mexican Tilapia, which is grown under quality standards determined by authorities such as PROFECO, COFEPRIS, and SENASICA, since transportation from farms and processing centers to points of sale is fast and does not require freezing, which guarantees a product that is always fresh and at an accessible price.

Tips for consuming good quality fresh fish and seafood

1. The scales and bones of the fish shall be well attached to the skin.

2. The gills must be bright red, without spots or unpleasant odors.

3. Bright and transparent eyes.

4. Texture of the flesh to the touch: firm that when touched does not remain submerged or melt with the fingers when rubbed.

5. Soft and pleasant smell, in case of giving off an ammonia smell, means that the fish is decomposed.

6. The flesh of the fish should be white or red, not yellowish.

7. Cook, roast or fry the fish perfectly and avoid eating it raw.