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Research confirms all salmon safe to eat

by the Fish Site Editor
10 August 2004, at 1:00am

BRITISH COLUMBIA - A study was released this week using previously published data to report on levels of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) - acompound reported in increasing concentrations in the environment.

Research confirms all salmon safe to eat - BRITISH COLUMBIA - A study was released this week using previously published data to report on levels of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) - a compound reported in increasing concentrations in the environment.

The study findings, which were funded by a US foundation and published in Environmental Science and Technology, confirm that while PBDEs are present in many fish in North America, there is no evidence to suggest any harm to humans from eating fish with the very low levels reported. Fresh water fish such as striped bass and mountain whitefish were found to generally have higher levels than salt-water species; rates in wild salmon are highly variable; and there was little difference detected between wild and farmed salmon.

The difference in levels found in wild or farmed fish is recorded in parts per billion and the levels reported are very low. said Mary Ellen Walling, Executive Director, BCSFA. There are two important things for consumers to know. First and most importantly, both wild and farmed salmon are a healthy and nutritious food with significant health benefits. And secondly even though wild BC Chinook had the highest levels reported, there is no meaningful difference between the levels found in wild and farmed salmon. Both are safe.

Fish and other seafood products are monitored by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, which ensures that levels are within acceptable limits set by Health Canada. As well, the Canadian aquaculture industry takes a proactive approach to addressing issues related to food safety. Industry research programs focus on ensuring food safety and environmental sustainability. For more information on PBDEs, please visit www.salmonfarmers.org/resources/links_pbdes.htm

According to the Department of Fisheries and Oceans, in 2002 the Canadian aquaculture industry reported operating revenues of $732.3 million up 4.9% from $697.8 million in 2001, with sales of products and services reaching $711.8 million, a 6.0% increase. Of that total, finfish, mostly salmon, accounted for just over 90% of total sales, or $644.3 million. British Columbia, Canada's largest aquaculture-producing province, generated sales of $329.6 million in 2002, up 12.3% from 2001.

Source: British Columbia Salmon Farming - 9th August 2004

the Fish Site Editor