Welcome to the first “Ocean News” post! Going forward, Oceana will be posting a daily round-up of the top ocean news from the previous day, ranging from heart-warming stories of entangled whale rescues to new research on sea level rise. Stay tuned for more!
For seafood lovers in Maryland, and for many around the U.S., there’s one fact that rings true: there’s nothing like a good Maryland crabcake. That rich, lumpy goodness comes from the Maryland “blue crab,” callinectes sapidus, and the dish is a cultural and culinary staple for the entire state. So, naturally, some people will do anything to protect them.
Coastal states take great pride in providing their consumers with fresh, locally caught seafood. But ask yourself this…how do we know that what’s on the menu is what we’re actually being served?
Last year, Oceana released the results of a nationwide study, which found that 33 percent of the more than 1,200 seafood samples it tested were mislabeled, according to FDA guidelines.
There’s a lot you don’t know about your seafood. MSN Healthy Living talked with Oceana CEO Andrew Sharpless, co-author of The Perfect Protein, to learn about four of the seafood industry’s dirty secrets. Read this excerpt from MSN to learn the secrets behind your seafood and how your choices can help the oceans.
Oceana would like to thank Representative Lois Capps (D-CA) for becoming the new House lead sponsor of the Safety and Fraud Enforcement for Seafood (SAFE Seafood) Act, a bill that would require full traceability throughout the U.S. seafood supply chain, giving consumers access to more information about where their seafood comes from and helping to keep illegally-caught fish out of our markets.
October is National Seafood month—the perfect time to dig in to all of the delicious dishes that come from the sea. But before you head to the market, you should read up on the nation-wide issue of seafood fraud.
Asian catfish hiding in your grouper sandwich. Escolar sold in your “white tuna” sushi roll. By now, most consumers know they can’t always trust what’s on their dinner plate, especially when it comes to seafood. But how often do you actually get to test your own knowledge of what you’re eating? Now is your chance to do just that, as Oceana teams up with the National Aquarium in Washington, D.C. for an interactive fine-dining experience as part of their Fresh Thoughts Dining Series.
The Massachusetts Legislature is currently considering three bills relating to seafood mislabeling, following in the footsteps of Washington state, which just last month enacted its own legislation on seafood mislabeling. I traveled to Boston earlier this week to testify before the Joint Committee on Public Health in support of these bills, which are important for giving consumers fuller and more accurate information about the seafood they buy.
Earlier this week, Washington State Governor Jay Inslee signed into law House Bill 1200 (HB 1200), which will begin to tackle seafood fraud throughout the state. Seafood fraud switches out the fish consumers intend to purchase with fish that is cheaper, less sustainable, or even dangerous. Oceana’s recent seafood fraud report found that 18 percent of fish sampled and sold in Seattle, WA, was mislabeled. And Washington’s results were better than most – our testing showed that fully one-third of seafood in restaurants and grocery stores throughout the country is mislabeled. Among specific cities and regions of the country, the numbers get even worse: 38 percent of Miami samples were mislabeled, 39 percent of New York City samples were mislabeled, and an incredible 52 percent of samples we tested in Southern California were not what they were labeled.