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Catfish found to be labled 'grouper'

US - In the wake of investigations across the country, consumers are asking more questions about the true identity of the fish on their dinner plates.

DNA testing has found that fish advertised as grouper or red snapper on restaurant menus can sometimes be Asian catfish, tilapia, or another inexpensive species.

A University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill research project tested red snapper samples from restaurants and distributors in eight states in 2004. DNA tests showed that more than 75 percent of the samples were not red snapper.

Only one out of the five samples sent to Therion International, an animal DNA testing company, by WNCT-TV in Greenville, North Carolina in 2005 turned out to be red snapper.

Still, it wasn't until Floridians learned last year that impostors were posing as grouper at some Tampa restaurants that species substitution in the seafood trade caught national attention.

The St. Petersburg Times reported in August that six out of 11 samples from Tampa restaurants were not grouper, but Asian catfish, tilapia, and European hake.

Source: Outer Banks Sentinel

the Fish Site Editor

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