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Thursday, June 14, 2012

Clean Eat Education :: Farm Raised vs. Wild Caught Fish

Do you know the difference between farm raised and wild caught fish? Did you even know there was a difference? Check your grocery store's offerings next time you visit the Seafood counter - you will be shocked to see how many varieties are farm raised vs wild caught (warning: the price may shock you too!).

So, what's the BIG deal? Farm raised fish are "farmed" in man-made ponds and pens with thousands upon thousands of other fish, often located near oceans and larger waterways. Instead of eating other fish (as they do in the wild), these fish are fed a diet of fish meal, grains and soy (yes, I said SOY!). The grains they are fed are farmed on land; therefore, you can't be sure that these grains are free from pesticides or other harmful chemicals.

Moreover, farm raised fish are susceptible to ingesting PCB's (Polychlorinated biphenyl) and dioxins since they often encounter run-off and harmful chemicals from large manufacturing plants and facilities before their fellow wild fish do. What do the farms do to combat this? They pump your fish full of antibiotics to try and "kill" off any bad bacteria. 

Are all farm raised fish at risk for these conditions and chemicals? No. However, how can you tell? Most packaging doesn't specify. Therefore, when in doubt, I go wild-caught - EVEN for my canned fish (tuna, salmon, etc). 

Have a great day and don't forget to make sure you are buying wild-caught fish at the grocery! 


Sources Used in This Article:
Scientific American


  1. I am hearing the term 'aquaculture' used as a substitute for 'farm-raised.' The industry knows consumers are paying attention and seem to be hiding behind new terms in addition to their other deceptive practices.


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