Coastal Fisheries Programme
Home PUBLICATIONS Information sheets Kit on fish handling

Handling seafood in the Pacific Islands
Information sheets for fishers, vendors and consumers


Text by Owen Li, Hampus Eriksson, Ian Bertram, Aymeric Desurmont and Michel Blanc; illustrations by Jipé LeBars; layout by Constance Odiardo

Fish is an essential part of the diet in the Pacific Islands. Much of the fish that is eaten has been caught and traded by someone other than the consumer. To assure that fresh and healthy fish is accessible through these distribution chains, the handling of fish must be hygienic and appropriate.

This folder contains five information sheets about ways to keep fish fresh, healthy and safe for human consumption for as long as possible. One information sheet each has been put together for:

  • fishers,
  • fish vendors, and
  • customers.

The information sheets contain information about how to handle and care for fish as a fisher, fish vendor or customer, to make sure that fish stays fresh, healthy and safe for human consumption. They are structured according to four rules: care, cool, clean, and quick. The information sheet for customers also includes a guide for how to choose the freshest fish.

The two additional sheets included in this folder are about:

  • the ‘cold chain’, and
  • freezing fish

The ‘cold chain’ sheet describes why it is important to keep fish cold throughout all the steps that fish go through between being caught and being sold, and how to do so.

The sheet about freezing fish describes how to freeze fish properly to ensure fish can be kept in good condition, and safe for human consumption for long periods. There are also tips on how to prepare fish for freezing so that their eating quality (i.e. flesh texture and flavour) is maintained.

Each sheet can be used on its own, without the information from the other sheets. Individual sheets can be photocopied and used for different activities.

List of documents

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Information sheet #1 FOR FISHERS
Download the PDF (780 KB)

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Information sheet #2 FOR VENDORS
Download the PDF (780 KB)

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Information sheet #3 FOR CONSUMERS
Download the PDF (950 KB)

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Information sheet #4 ABOUT THE COLD CHAIN
Download the PDF (980 KB)

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Information sheet #5 ABOUT FREEZING FISH
Download the PDF (980 KB)


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Complete publication
The 5 information sheets and the folder in one file
Download the PDF (3.9 MB)


Link to the Fish Handling Information sheets in:





Timor Leste





This series has been produced by  
the Pacific Community and WorldFish.


This work was undertaken as part of the CGIAR Research Program on Fish Agri-Food Systems (FISH). Funding support was provided by SwedBio, a programme at Stockholm Resilience Centre, and the Australian Government through the project FIS/2016/300 “Strengthening and scaling community-based approaches to Pacific coastal fisheries management in support of the New Song”.


© All rights for commercial/for profit reproduction or translation, in any form, reserved. The Pacific Community and WorldFish authorise the partial reproduction or translation of this material for scientific, educational or research purposes, provided that the Pacific Community, WorldFish and the source document are properly acknowledged. Permission to reproduce the document and/or translate in whole, in any form, whether for commercial/for profit or non-profit purposes, must be requested in writing. Original SPC artwork may not be altered or separately published without permission.

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