Clams

Maori name: Tuangi
Scientific name: Austrovenus stutchburyi
Availability: Year-round
Weight:
Length:

Plump, round shells with fine ridges that run in two directions,  Usually purple on the inside.  Cockles have a delicate cream flesh with a low oil content.  The meat is small in proportion to shell weight.

Clams

Maori name: Tuangi
Scientific name: Austrovenus stutchburyi
Availability: Year-round
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General

Plump, round shells with fine ridges that run in two directions,  Usually purple on the inside.  Cockles have a delicate cream flesh with a low oil content.  The meat is small in proportion to shell weight.

Sustainability

New Zealand operates a mandatory shellfish quality assurance programme for all bivalve shellfish grown and harvested in areas for human consumption - shellfish caught outside this programme can only be sold for bait. The programme, managed by the NZ Food & Safety Authority in cooperation with the District Health Board Public Health Units and the shellfish industry, involves surveying water catchment area for pollution, sampling water and shellfish microbiologically over at least 12 months and biotoxin testing, among other measures.

There are eight species of surf clams in the QMS: ringed dosinia, silky dosinia, frilled venus shells, triangle shells, trough and large trough shells and two types of tutatua. The catch limits for surf clams off the south western coast of the North Island were substantially increased from 1 April 2013 following a biomass survey which established that there were substantial quantities of surf clams available off the Manawatu coast.

Nutrition

Clams are a good source

To quality for a 'good source' claim the food must contain at least 25% of the RDI.
The Recommended Dietary Intake (RDI) is considered to be the average daily dietary intake level that is sufficient to meet the nutrient requirements of nearly all (97–98 per cent) healthy individuals in a particular life stage and gender group.

of Iodine

Iodine is necessary for the production of thyroid hormones, for normal neurological function and for normal energy metabolism, and it contributes to the growth and development in children

, Iron

Iron is necessary for the transport oxygen, for normal immune system function and for normal neurological development in the foetus, and it contributes to energy production and the reduction of tiredness and fatigue

, Vitamin B12

Vitamin B12 is necessary for normal neurological function and it contributes to blood formation, energy metabolism and to the growth and development in children

and Selenium

Selenium is necessary for normal immune system function and for the production of thyroid hormones and it contributes to the maintenance of hair and nails

; and a source

To quality for a 'source' claim the food must contain at least 10% of the RDI.
The Recommended Dietary Intake (RDI) is considered to be the average daily dietary intake level that is sufficient to meet the nutrient requirements of nearly all (97–98 per cent) healthy individuals in a particular life stage and gender group.

of Riboflavin (vitamin B2)

Riboflavin (vitamin B2) is contributes to the transport and metabolism of iron, to the release of energy from food and to the maintenance of normal vision

, Vitamin A

Vitamin A is necessary for normal vision and the structure and function of skin and mucous membranes

, Niacin (vitamin B3)

Niacin (vitamin B3) is necessary for the release of energy from food and for the normal structure and function of skin and mucous membranes, and contributes to the reduction of tiredness and fatigue

and Phosphorus

Phosphorus is necessary for normal teeth, bone and cell membrane structure and for energy metabolism

.

Seafood is a highly nutritious food and is a great source of protein

Protein is necessary for tissue building and repair, normal growth and development of bone in children and adolescents aged 4 years and over, and contributes to growth and maintenance of muscle mass

. Many species are low in saturated fat and a number of them are a good source of Omega 3

Omega 3 is a group of fatty acids that contribute to heart health

.

Tips

Clams are a delicacy, favoured for their texture and flavour. Put them into a soup/chowder, steam, fry, bake or barbeque them.

Buying & Storage Tips

Clams are available live and chilled, frozen or vacuum packed.

Live clams should be stored in an open container with a damp cloth over them, in the fridge, and served within 48 hours of purchase.