Size Matters! "Hello, Fishvish ?" "Good morning, how can I help you?" "Do you have tiger prawns?" ...

Prawn Sizing

24 March 2015
Size Matters!
"Hello, Fishvish?"

"Good morning, how can I help you?"

"Do you have tiger prawns?"

"Yes we do, what size would you like?"

"Arre!! I just asked you nah? Tiger prawn!"

This is a fairly common and typical call for us to handle at Fishvish

"Tiger" prawn is not a size. "King" prawn is not a size. They're both prawn / shrimp species. Yes, there is confusion with the terms "shrimp" and "prawn" too, but that's a topic for another day.

To explain sizing we need to also understand two broad terms - HOSO and PDTO - HOSO or Head On Shell On and PDTO - Peeled Deveined Tail On - are two forms in which prawns are usually sold world wide. 

Prawn sizing is based not only on form (HOSO or PDTO) but also on the actual number of prawns per pound or kilogram. The charts below will give you a quick and easy guide on sizing of the two forms. 

H O S O
Market Name Size Terminology Prawns per Kilogram
Extra Colossal U/5 4-5
Extra Colossal U/10 7-9
Super Colossal U/12 or 10/12 9-11
Colossal U/15 or 13/15 13-14
Extra Jumbo 16/20 17-19
Jumbo 21/25 22-24
Extra Large 26/30 27-29
Large* 31/35 32-34
Medium Large* 36/40 37-39
Medium 41/50 42-49
Small 51/60 52-59
Extra Small 61/70 62-69
 
P D T O
Market Name Size Terminology Prawns per Pound Prawns per Kilogram
Extra Colossal U/5 4-5 8-9
Extra Colossal U/10 7-9 14-18
Super Colossal U/12 or 10/12 9-11 19-23
Colossal U/15 or 13/15 13-14 26-30
Extra Jumbo 16/20 17-19 32-40
Jumbo 21/25 22-24 45-55
Extra Large 26/30 27-29 55-60
Large* 31/35 32-34 60-70
Medium Large* 36/40 37-39 72-80
Medium 41/50 42-49 85-98
Small 51/60 52-59 100-120
Extra Small 61/70 62-69 125-140

* In India the norm is now to have a single size that encompasses both these sizes into a single grade.
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