UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization Report Says Farmed Fish To Exceed Wild Fish In Human Consumption By 2018

UN's Food and Agriculture Organization Report Says Farmed Fish To Exceed Wild Fish In Human Consumption By 2018

The UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization (The FAO) just released a report on Monday that projects aquaculture output to rise 33 percent over the next decade in a bid to meet the world’s growing demand for fish.  World trade of fish for human consumption is expected to expand by as much as 25 percent in the next decade.

UN's Food and Agriculture Organization Report Says Farmed Fish To Exceed Wild Fish In Human Consumption By 2018“Aquaculture will remain one of the fastest-growing animal food-producing sectors,” the report said.  By 2018, farmed fish is expected to exceed captured fish for human consumption for the first time.  The demand for fish has been on a steady increase because of the health benefits, high protein density, and nutrient rich content of fish.

 

The food agency urged countries to effectively manage their fisheries and aquaculture sectors to help ensure the food security for millions of people.  They continued, warning that failing to do so would have serious environmental, economic and social consequences.

“Fisheries and aquaculture are making a vital contribution to global food security and economic growth….However, the sector faces an array of problems, including poor governance, weak fisheries management regimes, conflicts over the use of natural resources, the persistent use of poor fishery and aquaculture practices.  It is further undermined by a failure to incorporate the priorities and rights of small-scale fishing communities and the injustices relating to gender discrimination and child labor.”

 

Do you know where your fish comes from?

World’s Oldest Fishing Traps Found At The Bottom Of The Baltic Sea

World's Oldest Fishing Traps Found At The Bottom Of The Baltic Sea

One of the projects scientist diving during the search.

Marine archaeologists from Stockholm’s Sodertorn University have what they think are the remains of ancient stationary basket fishing traps.  The finger-thick hazel rods grouped on the sea bed resemble similar remains found elsewhere in the world.  Their age is what makes them special.

“This is the world’s oldest find when it comes to fishing,” said Johan Ronnby, a professor in marine archaeology.  Arne Sjostrom, a fellow archaeologist who worked on the Sodertorn project, said the sticks seemed to have been used as a “sort of fence to lead the fish into a creel or they were part of the actual creel”.  If you’re wondering what the hell a creel is I’ll save you the wiki search; it’s a woven basket used to keep fish that have been caught, fresh.

The remains of seven basket traps were found submerged in an ancient river valley off the Southern coast of Sweden at a depth of 5-12m (16.5-40ft), Mr Sjostrom said.  Only one of the baskets has been carbon-dated thus far.  Results have pegged the age at an estimated 9,000 years old.  That time period is thought to the period when Stone Age man developed agriculture and built what became the world’s first cities.

Keep Tiger Prawns (Jumbo Shrimp) Off Your Plate

Keep Tiger Prawns (Jumbo Shrimp) Off Your PlateShrimp are fantastic.  Prawns are even better because it means you’re in England.  I love a nice bed of rice with a giant shrimp prawn sitting on top.  Feels rich.  Look at me – I’m king dammit!  Only there’s a problem.  There’s always a problem.

The Swedish Society for Nature Conservation (can you imagine those member meetings?) wants you to know all about the negative effects of giant prawn farming on the environment.  Apparently it’s a horror show for just about everything involved, start to finish.  There’s antibiotics, pollution, chemical cocktails (there are 155 possible chemicals used in Thailand to farm shrimp….155!), mangrove destruction…everything short of the wholesale invasion of Poland.  Boo.  Even “organic” shrimp is supposed to be nothing of the sort.  I try to be fairly hardcore about where my food is coming from but I’d never given much thought to shrimp.  I suppose I will now.  Time to find whatever wild caught shrimp is available the next time it comes across my dinner plate.  Check out the short video below, it outlines the broad strokes of the whole thing.

Super Rare Calico Lobster Caught In Maine – Meet Calvin The Calico Lobster

Super Rare Calico Lobster Caught In Maine - Meet Calvin The Calico Lobster

The luckiest lobster alive was caught off Winter Harbor, Maine and is a 1-in-30 million find.  The blue lobster (which I’ve actually set eyes on in a museum years ago) is common by comparison, a one in a million occurrence.

The lobster was sold along with several others to a local restaurant.  The staff from Jasper White’s Summer Shack restaurant in Cambridge, Mass., chose to spare the speckled crustacean’s life instead of dooming it to a summer diner’s plate.

“We happened to be cleaning the tank and I happened to be there, one of my guys said, ‘Chef, look at this lobster,’ and from across the room I knew it was special,” said the restaurant owner Jasper White, in an interview with the Boston Globe.

The staff discovered the rare lobster, which they decided to name Calvin, in a 1,200-gallon lobster tank.  White sent a picture of the lobster to the New England Aquarium.  But before shipping him off, White made sure he gave him a pleasant stay.

“I gave him his own special area in the tank,” White said, reported the New York Times. “I fed him fresh squid and soft shell crab.  He had a wonderful time, I doubt if he’ll ever eat as well.”

The calico lobster is dark with bright orange and yellow spots.  It’s currently living at the New England Aquarium. in Boston, for the Biomes Marine Biology Center, a science center in Rhode Island.  Simply being born with a full set of spots ensures he’ll not be entering a boiling pot of water anytime soon.

First It’s My Kobe Beef – Now It’s My Sushi!! Sushi Mislabeling In California Study – Widespread and Pervasive

First It's My Kobe Beef - Now It's My Sushi!!  Sushi Mislabeling In California Study - Widespread and Pervasive

Mislabeling seems to be the newest trend for misguided restaurateurs.  We learned many restaurants and produce purveyors are pushing Kobe beef which is anything but.  Non-profit watchdog group Oceana has been conducting (and continues to conduct) testing of sushi purchased from restaurants and retail locations across the country.  A report released last week by the environmental advocacy group detailing sushi sold in California showed that 55 percent of the seafood it tested in the two counties was mislabeled.  Nearly 120 samples were collected from seafood restaurants, grocery stores, sushi bars and restaurant chains.

“Be on the look out for seafood sleuths in the Bay Area,” said Geoff Shester, Oceana’s California program director.  The organization has volunteers and staff actively testing fish in restaurants, grocery stores, retail locations, and fish markets throughout the state.

In the L.A. samples, red snapper was mislabeled 100% of the time.  100 per cent.  That means no one is eating red snapper.  DNA tests were use to identify tilapia and pollock as popular substitutes.  Dover sole was discovered to be Asian “sutchi catfish” or common sole, and white tuna was often actually escolar, a snake mackerel which is referred to as “ex-lax” fish, a nod to its effect on the digestive system. So potent is the effect, the fish has been restricted in some countries.  Samples of yellowtail sold at sushi restaurants were often Japanese amberjack.  Flounder was frequently sold as halibut, and sea bream was substituted for sea bass.

Sushi restaurants had the highest incidence of mislabeling in Los Angeles.  Oceana reported that 87% of fish served within the 10 categories tested, were mislabeled.  The main motivation for such deception and fraud is simple economics.  It is more profitable to sell an inexpensive fish that can pass for one that costs significantly more, especially if no one is any the wiser.  The report does not concentrate on the source of the mislabeling.  87% of fish sold in the United States is imported, it’s unknown where along the chain of processing, packaging, wholesaling, and resale the fraud occurs.

A Senate bill sponsored by Sen. Ted Lieu, D-Torrance, would address the problem by requiring big restaurant chains to provide more information to customers about the origins of the fish they serve.

Being a sushi fan myself I’d like to see some accountability for what’s getting passed off to the buying public.  If I’m paying twelve or fifteen dollars for a single plate of nigiri, I damn well better be getting what’s advertised.  We’ll keep you posted on any further developments.

Watch $70,000 Worth Of Caviar Get Eaten In One Minute – Russia’s First Caviar Eating Contest

Watch $70,000 Worth Of Caviar Get Eaten In One Minute - Russia's First Caviar Eating ContestCompetitive eating is a contentious thing.  On one hand it’s big business, with contestants vying for big money in some cases.  On the other hand, it’s gluttonous, a waste of food, and fairly gross.  Entertaining.  But gross.

The event was organised by Moscow caviar producers.  It brought together twelve contestants picked randomly from a hat.  Each were given 500g of caviar to eat in the shortest possible time.

Watch $70,000 Worth Of Caviar Get Eaten In One Minute - Russia's First Caviar Eating Contest

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