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Congress cracks down on seafood fraud

Posted on Wednesday, October 28, 2015 at 10:03 am

blue_crabLocal watermen of the Chesapeake Bay have come under attack from knowingly imported and mislabeled foreign seafood. Consumers are also at risk because safety standards for seafood in other countries of origin differ from those in the United States. “Consumers should protect themselves with knowledge about these issues and get to know local seafood companies they can trust,” said Paula Jasinski, executive director of Chesapeake Environmental Communications.

Crabbers from Virginia’s Blue Crab Industry Panel highlighted this significant problem for their industry several years ago.

Virginia crabbers who abide by the rules can be undercut in prices by those who are mislabeling or mixing seafood from other countries. Proper labeling would allow consumers the choice to pay for a cheaper imported product or slightly more for a safe, sustainable, local caught product.

The Chesapeake Bay is widely recognized as having some of the best seafood in the world and the blue crab is considered the best of the best for it’s taste and texture compared to crabs around the world and that’s where the seafood fraud capitalizes on the market. For instance, lump crabmeat, which is mostly used in crab cakes, may be labeled as Chesapeake Blue Crab when it is actually foreign crab, or domestic and foreign crab meat mixed…

(Information was compiled by Christopher Schmitt)

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