Merchants and fish dealers are mislabeling their fish product as entirely different species to get a better price at the market. A study released last week by Oceana UK scientists found fish in the skate family are being sold instead. Out of 1215 samples taken from seafood from 674 restaurants and grocery stores in the United States one-third of them were mislabeled.
Chicago, New York and Washington D.C., and every sushi bar tested
Through the use of new DNA barcoding, a specific segment of genetic material from a piece of fish is used to determine exactly what species of fish it truly belongs to. For years no one has known for sure which kind of fish they were receiving but a new scientific technology is now an important tool for combating seafood fraud.
The testing was perfected some years ago
Now cataloging the complete species in any given ecosystem is possible. This can also be used to genetically engineer more of that species. To test the fish all that is required is a frozen sample of the original species for preserved tissue samples, then a slice is taken for the process.
Tilapia which goes for $2.09 a pound is being billed as red snapper which goes for $4.39 a pound. The mislabeling can lead nutrition and PCB levels astray, not to mention allergy sensitivity can be misleading and dangerous.
Ask merchants and dealers a lot of questions since testing is not possible from home.