Something’s Fishy About Seafood Labels


Published:

Recently, the nonprofit watchdog Oceana released a report cautioning consumers that their seafood may not actually be what the label reads. In fact, if the fish was purchased in a supermarket in the United States, there is a 28 percent chance it is mislabeled and a 16 percent chance the real species carries some level of conservation risk, threatened or close to becoming threatened as defined by the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources). 

The U.S. government regulates the national seafood industry, but imported seafood has far looser standards, which according to Oceana, results in unchecked fraudulent mislabeling. While the global seafood industry raked in US$148 billion in 2014, there is not reliable information on the economic damage of mislabeling. Researchers from Oceana estimate the economic losses from illegal fishing are between US$10 and US$23.5 billion annually.

Oceana’s report found that 58 percent of mislabeled seafood carries a species-specific health concern including high levels of pesticides, environmental chemicals, and other toxins. These species compromise public health across borders and deny the sourcing transparency that many consumers have come to expect when they buy seafood. Mislabeling also has the potential to skew perception of species’ population health. When a meat frequently appears on restaurant menus and store shelves, consumers and scientists alike may reasonably assume that the populations are being maintained at sustainable levels when in fact they would benefit from stricter conservation. Oceana found that half of the populations fished have never been adequately evaluated for conservation status.

Regulating the world’s oceans poses numerous challenges for policymakers, leading to a gap between what consumers expect and what large producers are consistently providing. In recent years, the transparency has shifted to individual companies, like Boston-based Red’s Best, which developed a real-time tracking software for its partner fisheries. Red’s founder Joshua Auerbach says that while he appreciates the need for greater awareness of seafood mislabeling, the goal of his software is quite simple—empower small fisheries to compete in the global market. “The globalized seafood industry is not in the best interest of the people of New England,” says Auerbach. “It’s all about source—people want to eat what is local and traceable,” noting that Red’s software, which allows fishers, distributors, and consumers to receive real-time sourcing information via QR code, does not directly address the mislabeling issue. It does, however, allow for transparent supply chains and thus fewer illegal fishing schemes. “We developed a data management tool to support small-boat American fisheries who offer customers an alternative to potentially shady imports,” says Auerbach.

In response to illegal fishing schemes, Oceana, Google, and SkyTruth launched the Global Fishing Watch program in September of 2016. The program aims to hold seafood companies accountable to their customers by creating tracing technology for everyday use. Harnessing the already available Automatic Identification System (AIS) data that ships report regularly by law allows any user with an internet connection to access the current whereabouts of thousands of fishing boats across the world.

This article was republished from Food Tank.

See also:
Should You Be Concerned About Plastic And Other Human Debris In Your Seafood?
Bringing Purity Back Into The Seafood Industry

Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module Edit ModuleShow Tags

Daily Astrology

June 22, 2018

The day is off to a slow start as the Libra Moon travels void of course. Some folks are lethargic. Attention easily wanders so if you have something important to say, make sure you’re fully understood. The lackadaisical mood lingers into the…
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Alternative Health Directory

Browse all listings »

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Calendar

June 2018

Join us for a monthly gathering of like-hearted people to give and receive angelic energy healing. This session is a combination of group meditation and discussion, along with working in pairs...

Cost: Scale $5-$20 ($10 suggested)

Where:
Pathway Of Joy
884 Broadway, Suite 12
Upstairs in the Spiritual Renaissance Center building
South Portland, ME  04106
View map »


Sponsor: Pathway Of Joy
Telephone: 207-329-7192
Contact Name: Linda Huitt
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...
No Events

What better way to end a busy day than with a little bliss. We'll support your body right where it is today and help you to open your spine to find more movement and flexibility. Begin and end...

Cost: $18

Where:
Body Love Wellness Center
484 Bedford St
East Bridgewater, MA  02333
View map »


Sponsor: Bliss Through Yoga
Telephone: 508-331-3564
Contact Name: Janice
Website »

More information

8 Week Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Course with Erin Woo Tuesdays, May 1 - June 19, 6–8:30 pm *Includes an all day retreat on Saturday, June 9 from 9 am - 4 pm Come explore the...

Cost: $290

Where:
Balance Bethlehem
2087 Main Street
Bethlehem, NH  03574
View map »


Sponsor: Balance Bethlehem
Telephone: 603-869-2125
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

If you are worried about getting Parkinson’s or have beginning symptoms, check out a free intro on how to rewire your brain from the inside. First and third Wednesdays of the month,...

Where:
, MA


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

June 21 - 24, 2018 Healing trauma and installing boundaries. 9am-6pm each day. With Judith Swack, PhD. Learn how to heal PTSD. HBLU™ integrates the best of biomedical science, psychology,...

Where:
Needham, MA


Telephone: 781-444-6940
Website »

More information

Learn from local industry leaders, scientists and experts about innovations in wellness, behavioral change, nutrition, fitness, environmental, societal wellbeing and more. Learn how to start or...

Cost: Free

Where:
CIC Cambridge
One Broadway
Venture Cafe 5th Floor
Cambridge, MA  02142-3104
View map »


Sponsor: CIC Cambridge
Telephone: 617-953-0674
Contact Name: Shakti Rowan
Website »

More information

Chef Arwyn Fires It Up! Embrace the Fire, the Sun, and the Light! Watch as Chef Arwyn brings our Café Bar to life cooking fresh, festive locally sourced ingredients over flames. She will...

Cost: $10

Where:
Groton Wellness
493 Main Street
Mill Run Plaza
Groton, MA  01450
View map »


Sponsor: Cafe at Groton Wellness
Telephone: 978-449-9919
Contact Name: Amy Ashman
Website »

More information

Revel in the longest day of daylight of the year! Join us for a special meditation celebration of the Summer Solstice. We will also be integrating our Tibetan and crystal bowls into this...

Cost: Pre-Reg. $20 includes materials

Where:
Brookside Farms
8 Mammoth Rd
Pelham, NH   03076
View map »


Sponsor: The Healing Power of Flowers - Heaven and Earth
Telephone: 603-275-7688
Contact Name: Stacey Smith
Website »

More information

Energy Healing is an expression of our infinite connection to divine life force and divine imagination. When these divine forces move through us, they bring healing, wisdom, and the ability to...

Cost: $30

Where:
Circles of Wisdom
90 Main Street
Andover, MA  01810
View map »


Sponsor: Circles of Wisdom
Telephone: 978-474-8010
Website »

More information

June 21 - July 1, 2018 Women’s Yoga Retreats in beautiful Rockport, ME. Relax, rejuvenate, rediscover. 3 amazing options: Kundalini Summer Solstice - Jun 21-24 Gentle Yoga - Jun 24-28...

Where:
Rockport, ME


Telephone: 508-990-6795

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

With Joseph Carringer Relax, clear out energetic and emotional stagnation and connect with your major energy centers. Joseph provides a meditative journey that reconnects the mind with the...

Cost: $45

Where:
YogaLife Institute of NH
Lower Level
6 Chestnut Street
Exeter, NH  03833
View map »


Sponsor: YogaLife Institute of NH
Telephone: 603-867-3969
Contact Name: Alice Bentley
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Back, neck, and/or sciatica pain? Svaroopa yoga is well known for relieving pain and releasing tension throughout your entire body. Classes begin and end with a guided awareness and include...

Cost: $18

Where:
Body Love Wellness Center
484 Bedford St
East Bridgewater, MA  02333
View map »


Sponsor: Bliss Through Yoga
Telephone: 508-331-3564
Contact Name: Janice
Website »

More information

Celebrating The Summer Solstice And Kicking Off Summer Season! We have a Marvelous line up of different intuitive/healing/wellness services to sample from as you enjoy a fun refreshing day for...

Cost: Special $25 and $60

Where:
The Healing Power of Flowers - Heaven and Earth
68 Stiles RD Unit #A
Our Yellow Banner is in Window
Salem, NH  03079
View map »


Sponsor: The Healing Power of Flowers - Heaven and Earth
Telephone: 603-275-7688
Contact Name: Stacey Smith
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module Edit ModuleShow Tags