seafood food safety

Seafood Food Safety: Farming Ain’t Organic!


Seafood food safety has hit the spotlight! A recent study that was conducted by Center for Food Safety (CFS) in the United States reported the reasons why ocean-based aquaculture – or more commonly known as fish farming – can never be certified as organic. In their report, Like Water And Oil: Ocean-Based Fish Farming and Organic Don’t Mix that by putting the label ‘organic’ on goods produced from aquaculture would sully the integrity of the USDA organic label.

The research completed was funded by 53 fishers, organic farmers, organic consumers and animal welfare and environmental advocacy organisations. The argument made is that it is near impossible to control the variety of substances in the aquatic environment. This includes toxic pollutants that might flow into and out of these sea-based farms. Furthermore, in the past twenty years, farmers have reported up to 24 million fish escapes worldwide. These escaped fish can carry various pathogens and diseases which could change the structure of the surrounding ecosystems. This mere fact of disruption of marine ecosystems violates one of the basic tenets of organic, which is to promote ecological balance and conserve biodiversity.

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