andrew schneider investigates

March 20, 2008

Holiday fish rush eased

Filed under: Food - good, bad, weird,Food Safety,Good food,Seafood — Andrew Schneider @ 09:26

Most Americans get their seafood at restaurants but, according to the Environmental Defense Fund, that changes between the Lenten season between Ash Wednesday and Easter Sunday when seafood sales for home consumption traditionally increase by 30 percent.

But the fish counter can be a confusing place for shoppers. I talked to fish mongers at Safeway, Metro Market and Fisherman’s Terminal and they agree that people are asking a lot more questions beyond “Is this fresh?”

Which seafood to buy? Photo by Andrew Schneider

The top queries included whether the possible closing of salmon fishing off California would be felt in the Northwest, and what about mercury contamination in swordfish and tuna, and of course, which seafood are environmentally-friendly choices. The answer to the first question is there is no cause to worry about getting wild salmon at markets in the Northwest . The managers of several stories told me that we get 90 percent of the wild salmon from waters between northern Oregon and Alaska and they anticipate no problems with supply.

There is now a simple way to get the answers and latest information on which seafood is safest and most plentiful, and get it while you’re shopping.

The Environmental Defense Fund and the Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch program have long offered information to consumers on wallet cards and their Seafood Selector website. Now you can get the the latest guidance on your cell phone or other mobile device while deciding on what seafood to get at the market or restaurant.

Information on their “Seafood Selector To-Go” can be accessed here. The link will provide consumers with mobile information on more than 200 popular seafood choices.


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