viernes, 9 de agosto de 2013

Oceana Study: ‘Fish Fraud’ Ripping Off American Consumers

Consumers deserve to know their seafood is safe, legally caught, and honestly labeled

In a follow-up to its February report finding one-third of the seafood tested in the United States is mislabeled according to U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) the new report from Oceana says that seafood fraud is practiced on consumers when less-expensive and less-desirable species are passed off as high-quality fish.

“If a consumer eats mislabeled fish even just once a week, they could be losing up to hundreds of dollars each year due to seafood fraud.”
According to the Oceana study, substitution of a lower-cost species such as tilapia for more-expensive grouper could cost consumers an extra $10 for an eight-ounce filet in a restaurant, and the common substitution of Atlantic farmed salmon for wild Chinook salmon adds another $5 to a restaurant bill.

“Consumers deserve to know their seafood is safe, legally caught, and honestly labeled, including information like where, when and how it was taken out of the ocean”.
The 23-page Oceana report on fish fraud says part of the problem is that seafood follows a complex path “from boat to plate.” Fish often cross ocean basins and multiple countries before reaching the final point of sale.
Oceana says that each stop in the supply chain is an opportunity for fraud. “Without traceability, or requiring information to follow the fish through the supply chain that is transparent and verifiable, consumers can be subject to fraud at every step the way,” the group says.

Oceana supports the Safety and Fraud Enforcement for Seafood (SAFE) act that has been pending in Congress since March. The group says it has more than 500,000 members worldwide.
In total, Americans are eating about $80 billion worth of fish annually.
The study found seafood labels often provided inaccurate information and that less-expensive species were often swapped for sought-after fish such as Atlantic cod, red snapper and wild salmon.
Mislabeling is common, Oceana says, because of the immediate economic incentive combined with little enforcement.

Aporte: Gianni Passalacqua

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