Although inspectors have yet to find any horsemeat in the seafood aisle, it turns out a whole lotta fish isn’t what you think it is, according to a recent study by the Biodiversity Institute of Ontario. As the CBC reports, “DNA analysis shows 33 per cent of fish sold in grocery stores, restaurants and sushi venues in the U.S. is mislabelled,” following a 2011 study that found an even greater percentage (41 per cent) of Canadian fish suffer a similar identity crisis after being filleted.
As it turns out, it’s most often a case of lesser fish being substituted for more premium products. According to the CBC, “pangasius is often sold as grouper, sole and cod; tilapia as red snapper; and Atlantic farmed salmon as wild or king salmon.” Worst of all, the report found that “84 per cent of white tuna samples were actually escolar, which can cause digestive issues for some people.” Eighty-four per cent!? That’s like playing Russian Roulette with five bullets in the chamber, if by bullets, you mean a fish that’s banned in Italy and Japan, and by chamber, we’re talking about “yellowish-orange drops of oil instead of liquid bowel movements.” Ewww, remind me not to buy tuna at No Frills!
Better stay away from the red snapper, too. As per the CBC, “Only seven of the 120 red snapper samples tested correctly.” That’s a whopping 5.83 per cent, or, in a Rogers-sponsored Toronto Blue Jays reference, even worse than J.P. Arencibia’s batting average at the start of last season. Remember when he was only hitting .058, then he had to go on the Disabled List? Wait, he hadn’t consumed a bad batch of escolar, had he!? That might explain why he kept leaking oil at the plate…
For the record, Arencibia is hitting .348 to start the 2013 season—which is roughly twice the probably of you actually getting tuna at the grocery store, as per the Biodiversity Institute. Aaaand next thing you know, those weren’t actually Miami Marlins we acquired back in January, either, but Bridgeport Bluefish. Maybe that’s why the Jays are 2-4!