Mislabeled seafood, or seafood fraud, is a hot topic in the fish world these days. Recent exposés by the Boston Globe and Consumer Reports have revealed an alarmingly high rate of seafood deception in restaurants and markets. Conducting DNA testing on fish from local restaurants, the Globe found that about 50% of tested fish were mislabeled. What does this mean? Well, for the average seafood consumer, it means that the fish you pay for is often not the one you actually get.
Seafood fraud can result in adverse health effects, reinforce the market for illegal fishing, and perpetuate false information about the true state of the marine environment.
But unless you’re a marine biologist, fisherman or seafood purveyor, it can be hard to tell the difference between wild and farmed salmon, red snapper and tilapia, or grouper and Vietnamese catfish (aka basa). The FDA has a list of the most commonly substituted seafood items, but good luck finding this posted anywhere that you buy fish. Read More