When aspiring to exceptional culinary standards, Ōra King salmon is the first and only choice for discerning chefs around the world.
The high oil content naturally present in the Ōra King breed can be seen in the striking marbled fat lines within the bright orange flesh, instantly drawing comparison to Wagyu.
The King salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) species makes up around 0.7% of the global salmon population and is regarded by many as the pinnacle salmon species internationally. The Ōra King best of breed salmon showcases the ultimate of this rare and exclusive species.
King salmon boast bright silver skin. They have a rounder mid-section in comparison to the longer, thinner body of the common Atlantic salmon species.
Our King salmon have an elegant balance of sweet and umami flavours, complementing a wide variety of ingredients.
King salmon have a vibrant orange flesh colour, which contrasts attractively with the marbled fat lines for unsurpassed plate appeal.
King salmon have the highest oil content of all salmon species. The high oil content keeps the salmon moist, greatly reducing the risk of over-cooking.
King salmon’s texture is buttery and soft due to its unique muscular structure. It cuts well, is light in the mouth and coats the palate appealingly, making it a pleasure to eat.
About Ora King
Ora King Salmon classical breeding programme has seen over 20 years of genetics expertise and sustainable husbandry practices create eight generations of King salmon. This has produced over 100 distinct King salmon families, chosen so that only the finest examples – with the most appealing taste, texture, colour and size – are carried forward to subsequent generations
King salmon eggs destined to produce Ōra King are nurtured in the crystal clear waters flowing from Te Waikoropupu Springs at our hatchery in Takaka. With an average of 14,000 litres of fresh water bubbling to the surface of the springs every second, the waters of this region have been verified as some of the clearest in the world, an ideal beginning to the life cycle for Ōra King salmon.
Within their first year, the smolt are transported in specially designed tankers to the Marlborough Sounds, to mature in fast flowing sea waters, thus emulating the lifecycle of the wild King salmon.
Upon arrival at processing facility, each salmon is carefully and thoroughly washed and graded, a critical step in achieving the best possible shelf life for whole Ōra King salmon.
A Master Grader, dedicated to Ōra King, reviews each salmon against specifications for shape and condition. An individually numbered gill tag is then attached to those salmon that make the Ōra King grade, providing traceability and evidence of our product’s authenticity
Salmon farming in Marlborough has a tiny footprint. Our maximum consented surface hectares represent about 0.03% of the total surface area of the Marlborough Sounds – the equivalent of 17 hectares out of 61,034.
The pure and isolated waters of the Marlborough Sounds enable us to raise Ōra King salmon in a natural and wholesome manner, with sea farm pens being 98% water space to 2% salmon.
When the salmon reach an average size of 4kg they are ready to harvest. Ōra King are committed to humane harvesting techniques to ensure the process is as quick, effective and stress-free as possible. They are then transported to Ōra King’s Nelson facility for processing.
The New Zealand King Salmon Co. Ltd has achieved the world-leading Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) certification from The Global Aquaculture Alliance.
This independent certification supports the company’s ongoing and substantial efforts to maintain its environmental integrity
Monterey Bay Aquarium’s globally respected consumer guide Seafood Watch® has rated New Zealand’s marine-farmed salmon, including Ōra King salmon, as “Green”, meaning it is a “Best Choice” for consumers. New Zealand King salmon is the first and only ocean-farmed salmon to have achieved the Green/Best Choice rating from Seafood Watch.
In addition, King salmon from New Zealand has recently been rated ‘Recommended’ by Ocean Wise. Ocean Wise are a Vancouver Aquarium conservation programme aimed at educating and empowering consumers about the issues surrounding sustainable seafood.
These ratings are a strong endorsement of the sustainability credentials of the New Zealand King salmon industry.