My fish wasn't hard-frozen

It's not a disaster

We try Oh So Hard to ensure your fish arrives frozen. But we do not succeed every time. Problems include

  • Courier missorts (usually means a 24 hour delay)
  • Delivered to wrong house / flat
  • Very hot days (we use extra dry ice on very hot days but sometimes even that is insufficient).
  • Very small orders – even if not delayed,  it’s a big challenge to get an order of say 300 grams of sashimi delivered to you still frozen. Still, such orders are usually intended to be consumed within 24-48 hours, so it’s not the end of the world.

For these reasons, and as set out in our terms and conditions, we do not guarantee your fish will arrive frozen.

However, defrosted but cold is a good backup.

Please see this short video in which we review the issue of defrosted deliveries.

It is OK to refreeze your fish

As long as your fish is cold to the touch when you open your box, it is OK to freeze it.

Some people find it hard to believe this because they have many times heard NEVER REFREEZE A DEFROSTED PRODUCT.

“Never refreeze…” is a simple message for 60 million people including many who would casually leave refrigerated food out of the fridge for hours and sometimes days, and then freeze it. The purpose of this message is to protect fools from themselves.

However, it is OK to refreeze a defrosted food IF IT HAS STAYED COLD. The cutoff point is 8 centigrade, but you don’t need a thermometer. Basically, does it feel as if it just came out of the fridge? (which would typically be 3 centigrade).

Consider this: Would you be happy to eat it now/ tonight/ tomorrow? (if it were convenient and you kept it in your fridge in the mean time). If yes, then it is OK to freeze it, because FREEZING NEVER MAKES THINGS WORSE. It just arrests them exactly where they are now.

See what others say

Waitrose refreeze advice

 All supermarkets sell defrosted fish as if it were fresh and they all advise that it may be frozen when you get home.


The batter on battered fish defrosts quite quickly and it may seem that the fish inside the batter is defrosted too. In fact the contents will stay cold for long after the batter has defrosted. A more serious problem is that unless you take great care, the battered items will freeze together, which can be inconvenient.


What to do

If your fish is not frozen when you open your box, please first of all judge whether it is cold to the touch. If so, please get it in your freezer straight away. Then, if you feel the need, call or email us. We will always respond constructively with the best advice we can give about temperatures and refreezing (based on the above). However, we will ask you to defer judgement about the eating quality of the fish until you eventually prepare and eat it. If at that stage you are not happy, just call us for a refund. If you have battered products, we'll do whatever we need to do to keep you happy.


If you want a refund

We will always give a refund without grudging when we can tell – based on our vast experience – that your request for a refund is fair.

Occasionally, we are faced with customers do not accept what we have said above and insist on a refund in a situation where we know for sure that their fish arrived cold and 100% fit to refreeze. We will normally fulfil such requests but will not accept further orders from the customer.


If you rejected your order at the point of delivery

To qualify for this refund, you must have accepted your order, even if it was a day late. Our terms and conditions state that when you place an order, you must accept it a day late. WE PACK OUR PARCELS TO COPE - most day-lates arrive in good condition.


Isn’t there a way to be sure of getting my fish here frozen?

Sadly, there is not. Our courier handles 700,000 parcels most nights. It is beyond human ingenuity to make sure every one arrives exactly as planned. We have used every courier company in the UK. None is perfect but our courier is the least imperfect.

 Please see this blog about how one hesitant customer reframed his views after refreezing the most delicate fish of all - sashimi.