Speaciality Products

Squid (Calamari)

Squid (or calamari as it is commonly referred) is a cephalopod mollusk with an internal shell. Squid meat is ivory in color with dark spots of purple tinges and cooks up white. The edible parts of squid are the tentacles, the tube, and the wings. Loligo squid is the most popular, and can be tenderized by blanching, needling, or soaking it in enzymes.

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  • 3.5 oz (100g) raw edible portion

  • Calories 96

  • Calories from Fat 13

  • Total Fat  2g

  • Saturated Fat 0g

  • Cholesterol 228mg

  • Sodium 44mg

  • Total Carbohydrates 3g

  • Protein 15g

  • Potassium0g

Quality Control

Any red coloration of the mat indicates spoilage. Fresh squid should have an ivory color beneath the naturally occurring dark spots on its body. Also, the squid should have a fresh, sweet smell. Arrow squid are generally marketed in one of two forms, the “New Zealand style” or the “Asian style.” “New Zealand style” is cut off leaving a uniform tube with little or no taper. The “Asian style” refers to squid that has had only a small portion of the tail cut leaving a tube with more taper and thus yielding less uniform rings when cut. The tapered end of the tube is considered by some to be waste as the rings from this section are very small. Arrow squid has a wider body than Loligo or Illex and yield tubes that can be as wide as they are long. In addition, most arrow squid are twice frozen.


Squid can be pan or stir-fried, deep-fried, baked, broiled, or sautéed. Care should be taken while cooking as squid is easily overcooked and becomes rubbery.

Interesting fact

Giant squid can grow to be very large. One caught recently in New Zealand was 20 feet long and over 200 pounds.


A common alternative to squid is cuttlefish.


The most commonly eaten species of squid are the Loligo from the East Coast or West Coast of the U.S. or China, and Arrow Squid from the South Pacific. Argentina, Peru, and the Patagonian region off South America are the leading suppliers of Illex squid. Giant squid is also imported from South America. 

Harvest Method

Purse seines, trawlers, traps, and jigging are the most common forms of squid harvesting.

Harvest Season

Squid is available year-round with various season openings and closings that vary by species.


Squid meat is lean and lightly sweet.


Squid meat is firm, tender, and chewy.

Market Segments

Squid is appropriate in the casual dining, fine dining, hotel, and resort/club segments of the market.