The idea for Fish Fixe first swam to the surface in a pool in Mexico when Co-Founders, Melissa and Emily, were getting a much needed mom’s break.  At the time, Melissa’s husband was portioning and freezing fish from the family’s wholesale business, and sharing it with family and friends, Emily being one of them.  Melissa and Emily had an epiphany right there in the pool.  If they found convenience and freshness in the fish, wouldn’t others?  When the duo returned home to Houston, they set out on a mission to get Americans to eat more seafood.

The first goal was to research reasons why Americans weren’t eating seafood regularly, and how Fish Fixe could change that.  After identifying a list of very relatable problems, they realized that a major customer touch point – the product bag – could be the vessel to offer solutions.

What would our product bag look like?

In 2017, Melissa and Emily went to work creating the first iteration of the bag.  They knew they wanted Kraft-paper style, giving off that old school fish market feel, and only using black ink, a nod to when fish was wrapped in newspaper.   It would carry two 6-ounce portions and include a resealable snap at the top that would allow  “no fishy smell left behind” as consumers could throw their prep trash in the bag and seal in the stink!  And for visual purposes, they wanted the bag to stand up on its own in the freezer or fridge.  *Hello photoshoot!

How would the bag solve problems?

When it came to content, the question that continued to ring in their minds was,  if this bag was the customer’s only resource for cooking fish, what did it need to include?  Mel and Em identified the following consumer needs:

The Details

The first Fish Fixe bag carried all the product information and instructions on the front.   It detailed where the fish was caught (ie: Atlantic Scallops), how it was caught (wild), certifications (MSC) and lastly, the portion size (6 oz).  

In a study completed by The Food Marketing Institute, more than 2,000 U.S. shoppers were polled in a seafood survey. “Fifty percent of those shoppers said they wanted more knowledge about different methods for cooking seafood.”  We took this information and ran with it (into the kitchen).

Where the magic started.  

Melissa, our CEO but also Resident Chef, came  up with 2-3 simple and satisfying recipes per protein.  The most challenging part:  the recipes needed to be concise so they could fit within the printing limits of the bag, but also detailed enough so even amateur cooks could follow and be successful.  Many of the recipes included, and still do to this day, your basic pantry staples – avocado oil, lemon, butter, salt, pepper, garlic salt, bread crumbs, etc.   And if avocado oil isn’t found in your house, it should be!

The beauty of fish is you don’t need a lot to give it great flavor and texture.

A less glamorous part of the bag, but perhaps the most important, are instructions on how to thaw and prep.  Shipping frozen fish nationwide is a relatively new concept, and if you’ve cooked with frozen fish before it’s probably because your dad caught a healthy bounty and froze it.  So for all those who didn’t have the pleasure of ziploc’d fish in your freezer growing up, we provided instructions. 

A Recent Refresh 

In the fall of 2021, as Fish Fixe was hitting its four-year anniversary, the bag needed a redesign and we wanted to bring bag production back to the U.S.  The content for the most part still worked, but the scale of the content, the layout of the information, and the detail of the recipes, needed a facelift.

First we hired a  new bag vendor, ePak, right up the road in Austin, Texas.  The new printing company and bag, allowed us to expand the printing perimeters so we could increase the content.  We were able to keep the shape of the bag and the reseal.

We loved the kraft-style; it felt like a big part of Fish Fixe’s look, but if we wanted to use recycled materials, we needed to change the feel of the bag.  It no longer felt -Kraft-y, but rather more smooth.  We were happy to sacrifice the feel, for a more environmentally-friendly, post consumer recycled bag. 

Next up, we moved the thaw, prep and cooking instructions to the reverse side of the bag, therefore freeing up space to enlarge the Fish Fixe logo, the fish icon and product details on the front.  This presented a much more esthetically pleasing front side, and to Emily’s delight, a better product for photoshoots.

On the new reverse side, directions were bigger and recipes were more detailed.  We also had space to include a much desired QR code that led to Fish Fixe Kitchen, Instagram and Facebook pages, nutritional information and more. 

So now when we ask ourselves, if this bag was the customer’s only resource for cooking fish, what did it need to include?  We think we’ve ticked all the boxes. 

*Prior to joining Fish Fixe full-time in 2021, Emily brought numerous spirits brands to market.  Her decade plus in creating and marketing brands, prepared her for helping to build the foundation for the Fish Fixe Brand!