Farm fish is fish raised on farms for the sole purpose – sale. We all know that fish is good for us because is rich in vitamins, minerals, protein, omega etc., all ingredients which our body needs for healthy nutrition. Usually this is true but all depends from the origin of the fish. One of the America’s most famous fish is Tilapia which has become the most consumed fish in America in the last couple of years and it is farm raised. It turned out that farm raised fish have more disadvantages than advantages and consuming it may cause more harm than good. This is also true for farm raised salmon, cod, catfish etc.
Why is it dangerous?
When the levels of omega 3 and omega 6 are very different inflammation may happen. This inflammation may lead to heart diseases, asthma and many other chronic illnesses. Tilapia which is raised on farms has this inflammatory potential because it has fewer omegas 3 than other fish. Researches from Wake Forest University confirm this and they claim that tilapia has higher inflammatory potential than hamburger or pork.
Fish that live on farms carry high concentrations of antibiotics and pesticides. Why is this so? You will be surprised but they are given antibiotics to survive and pesticides to combat sea lice. It is known that fish farms in China are the worst. Here not only antibiotics and pesticides, fish are fed with very bad food. According to Economic Research Service this is alarming because there are rumors that the fish are fed with chicken and pig feces which are still not confirmed. Seafood Watch also alarms and says to be very careful when we chose our food.
Dibutylin is known to weaken the immune system and dioxins may cause cancer. These two chemicals may be found in farm fish. Researchers confirm that dioxin levels are 11 times higher in farm than in wild fish.
What is best to do?
The labeling on the packages may be not correct and some foods are exempt from having to label the food’s origin. Also there is no way to know if the fish is GMO or organic. This is why you have to double check the label. Don’t buy food which has suspicious or not enough visible labeling. For tilapia the best choice is to buy it from farms in USA, Canada and Ecuador.
The best is to eat wild fish but the law is very strict and forbids us to fish whenever we want in order to preserve the environment. According to the Sydney Morning Herald, the most sustainable fish to eat are wild whiting, tailor, moonfish, mahi mahi and luderick (black fish). The Australians have also awarded the green label to Australian bonito, sea mullet and trevally, which are great sources of omega 3.
But still there is left the question how to consume ethically and it still needs to be answered.