Fish Fraud

Discussion in 'General Open Forum' started by Rockfish, Apr 8, 2013.

  1. Rockfish

    Rockfish Well-Known Member

  2. Dogbreath

    Dogbreath Well-Known Member

    That article is a POFS-a lousy rewrite from US sources.

    I can ID every piece of fish in the cooler in that photograph and I bet 90+% of BCers could too-I have seen very little mislabeling where I shop.
  3. Rockfish

    Rockfish Well-Known Member

    Perhaps where you shop but it is interesting that the article indicates that DNA analysis surveys in the states shows that 33% of fish is mislabeled as opposed to 41% mislabeled in Canada.

    What that says to me is that government in Canada abdicates its responsibilities to protect consumers to a greater degree than in the US and that the fraud artists feel safer here in getting away with it.

    As for the picture I suspect they just grabbed something out of their library for the story and does not represent the fish actually sampled.

    You are correct I have seen older stories on this in the US media which may have lead to the survey in Canada after the horse meat issue damaged markets in Europe.
  4. salmonkiller01

    salmonkiller01 Well-Known Member

    I cant tell in the cooler but i know if its talapia it glows in the dark and if it is farmed salmon no one in our family that eats it gets a cold that season. Ha Ha! I catch my fish and wont buy from grocery stores as I have been spoiled from eating real fresh salmon and cod. What a joke though mis-labelling food, thats a sad sign for society as a whole.
    trophywife, bigdogeh and Moose Jaw like this.
  5. Pippen

    Pippen Well-Known Member

  6. profisher

    profisher Well-Known Member

    I can spot the farmed crap in that photo. Not hard to tell with all the fat in between the muscle groups.
    bigdogeh likes this.
  7. agentaqua

    agentaqua Well-Known Member

  8. scott craven

    scott craven Well-Known Member

    The farmed salmon in the middle wouldn't have any color unless the pellets they are fed
    had dye in them.
    bigdogeh likes this.
  9. agentaqua

    agentaqua Well-Known Member

  10. Rockfish

    Rockfish Well-Known Member

    The issue of poor labeling and outright fraud related to the labeling of fish is not just a matter of ripping off consumers by fraudulently selling a low value fish at a high value fish price; it is in fact literally a matter of life and death for some Canadians.

    In the last five years I developed an allergy to fish and in fact I have learned you can develop food allergies at any time in your life. Luckily in my case my fish allergy is currently limited to certain species of fish rather than all fish and also so far while it causes noticeable symptoms, it has not developed to the point that it could kill me. After I eat a species of fish I am allergic to I get a funny tingling in the roof of my mouth and my lips swell up which I refer to as the “sexy pouty lips” because apparently some people (usually women) actually pay to have their lips injected to get this effect. I am not supposed to eat the species I am mildly allergic to because I have been told the more I eat them the worse the allergy could develop. For some people I believe even a tiny trace amount could kill them, especially without an EpiPen. I have a friend who’s entire family can only eat Halibut as all other fish species are problematic.

    Currently my safe fish species include all shellfish species plus salmon, halibut, tuna and mackerel. The fish that cause a reaction include: lingcod, rockfish and many other species, especially fish which have white flesh. I have not tried BC trout in recent years but suspect they may be OK being fairly closely related to salmon.

    If a fish is mislabeled as tuna and it turned out not to be tuna it could be problematic for some people, especially if they did not have an EpiPen. For people with extreme fish species specific allergies, they just can’t take the risk because of the fraud artists and even legitimate labeling errors and have to avoid all fish.

    Recently I had some Dim Sum shrimp dumplings which I have eaten many times before without a problem. Turns out that this particular frozen brand had the ground shrimp cut with a low cost fish of some sort (much like watered down drinks in a Mexican bar) and I got the sexy pouty lips, which go away in an hour. My fault for not reading the fine print because fish was on the label.

    Luckily I am in a position to catch my own fish and know what I am eating and trust my fishing buddy friends who sometimes provide me species like Tuna. I am also lucky that my reaction to the wrong fish is not severe. Further I am prepared to accept what I believe currently is a relatively small risk in my case and be as careful as I can be to enjoy the fish species I can eat. I sure do miss the fresh caught pan fried Rockfish fillets though.

    My point is that misrepresenting low value/cost fish as high value fish to make more money is more than just a fraudulent business practice. Such a practice has the potential to be very serious and should be taken far more seriously by the authorities than the research would indicate it is. In my own case if my fish species specific allergy were to become more severe it would force me to give up all fish even the safe ones, especially store purchased and dining out fish. I am very careful because my fish species specific allergies could get worse over time and even the species I can currently eat without symptoms could become problematic down the road.
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2017
    bigdogeh likes this.
  11. Clint r

    Clint r Well-Known Member

    Friend of mine developed an allergy to halibut at the age of 45. Poor bastard.
  12. bones

    bones Well-Known Member

    You should stay away from scallops then. Alot of frozen scallops are actually skate (approved relabeling).
    Fishtofino likes this.
  13. Fishtofino

    Fishtofino Well-Known Member

    Also known as mud slugs, lol.

    Ask a commercial fishman about skates :eek:
    bones likes this.
  14. Rockfish

    Rockfish Well-Known Member

    Environmental groups are giving Canada’s seafood labelling requirements an F grade due to their lack of details compared with American and European standards that specify place of origin and other factors.

    The report card released Thursday said Canada has the vaguest labelling on fish products among the three jurisdictions, increasing the risk of misrepresentation of what’s being sold.

    Basics such as the species’ scientific names, along with how and where the fish was caught and processed, should be on the labels, said Colleen Turlo, a spokeswoman for Halifax-based Ecology Action Centre and co-author of the study.

    “Inadequate seafood labelling means consumers don’t have adequate health and environmental information about the product,” Turlo said.

    In contrast, European Union labels include the common name, the scientific name, the harvest method, the geographic origin of the fish and the country where the fish was last processed. U.S. labels include the common name, the production method and the country where it was processed.

    “It’s shocking that our products from Canada are being sold with more detail in the United States and the European Union than they are in Canada,” Turlo said.

    Finest At Sea in Victoria is a seafood seller that offers plenty of information about what it sells. Not only does the company state where fish is from, but the label for spring salmon caught off Haida Gwaii specifies that the fish was troll-caught by the Malahat II, said Rose Brewer, a seafood manager. Giving customers that kind of confidence is a major selling point along with sustainable practices, she said.

    “I think everyone has the right to know where anything is coming from, especially these days,” Brewer said.

    When it comes to salmon, only Atlantic salmon is identified as salmon — and by definition is it farmed, not wild, said Albion Seafoods director of corporate quality Musleh Uddin. Even if the word farmed is not on the label.

    Every other kind of salmon is labelled as sockeye, coho or whatever, he said.

    Canada allows whole fish caught in other countries to be processed into fillets or other pieces and then labelled “product of Canada” or “made in Canada,” he said. The U.S. requires the product be labelled as, for instance, a product of China processed in the U.S.

    “Selling one kind of fish under another name is illegal under Canadian regulations, but there is little provincial/federal oversight,” Uddin said. “We are seeing frequent species adulteration in both retail and food service markets. For example, rockfish fillets are selling as Pacific snapper or expensive snapper/red snapper.”

    Labels that provide both the common name and scientific name would help eliminate seafood fraud and species adulteration, he said, even if most people would not recognize a scientific name. Pacific halibut, for example, is Hippoglossus stenolepis

    The report on Canadian standards by SeaChoice, a coalition of environmental groups , says some seafood sellers and retailers are voluntarily labelling seafood more comprehensively, but the lack of uniform regulatory requirements means that only some consumers have the information they need. Albion entered into a formal partnership in 2009 with SeaChoice.

    Canada should at least match U.S. and European standards to ensure as seafood makes it way through the supply chain that identifying information about the product is not changed, Turlo said. In Canada, it’s possible that consumers won’t have any idea, based on the label, what country the fish comes from and whether it was farmed or wild, she said.

    The Canadian Food Inspection Agency, which has authority over food labelling, told the Times Colonist in a statement that it reviewed the SeaChoice International report, including its concerns and recommendations, soon after it was published and the agency’s Food Labelling Modernization proposals are consistent in many ways with their recommendations.

    The labelling initiative “aims to develop a more modern food labelling system that responds to current and future challenges, including fish and seafood products processed in federal establishments or imported into Canada,” CFIA said.

    © Copyright Times Colonist
    bigdogeh likes this.
  15. agentaqua

    agentaqua Well-Known Member

    The Fish on My Plate | Trailer | FRONTLINE
    sly_karma likes this.
  16. agentaqua

    agentaqua Well-Known Member

  17. agentaqua

    agentaqua Well-Known Member

  18. Dogbreath

    Dogbreath Well-Known Member

    Look closely.

Share This Page