Be a Better Seafood Shopper – Part 1

January 25, 2008

The trick to buying seafood is to figure out which fish to buy. For us, “farm-raised”meant cramped quarters, antibiotics, dyes and contaminants. But fortunately, a new generation of fish farming pioneers has arrived. Changing Seas sustainable, organic aquaculture farmers use large, round, deep pens in fast-flowing tidal waters. No hormones or added color, and populations are kept at a low-level to promote healthier, happier fish.

Due to decreasing wild fish populations, over one-third of the seafood consumed globally comes from fish farms. As shoppers, we’ve learned to look for the MSC certified seal when purchasing wild fish. However, presently there are not good seals for farm-raised seafood and it will likely be a couple of years before consumers see an organic seal of approval.

Shopping Tips: Today your best retail source for sustainable seafood is Whole Foods. They have their own tough standards for salmon and are in the process of developing guidelines for other popular farm-raised fish such as tilapia and shrimp. Still, be keen and ask questions to get what you want. Chef Jamie Oliver suggests getting in the habit of phoning your fishmonger or grocery store to see what’s come in fresh that day, but be aware that it’s only the word of the fisherman and no stringent rules are in place, yet.

Easy Dinner: Falafel Salmon

Post a comment and share with us your tips for choosing the right seafood.

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