Billfish are one of the most majestic (and tasty) fishes in the sea.
Swordfish are overfished in the Atlantic. Females do not become sexually mature until they reach 150 lb. Unfortunately, they are often harvested when smaller.
Swordfish love the taste of squid. These guys love the taste of swordfish.
In March of 2004, the federal government shut down the Pacific swordfishing industry… … to save endangered sea turtles caught in longlines.
the Blue Ocean Institute scorecard Catches of truly giant swordfish now seem to be a thing of the past…
Species is relatively abundant, and fishing/farming methods cause little damage to habitat and other wildlife. Some problems exist with this species’ status or catch/farming methods, or information is insufficient for evaluating. Species has a combination of problems such as overfishing, high bycatch, and poor management; or farming methods have serious environmental impacts.
“ GROUPERS are generally long-lived. Many species live sedentary lives, change sex with age, and spawn in groups, making them particularly vulnerable to overfishing. Most groupers sold in the U.S. are imported, generally from countries with little management. Some grouper species in U.S. waters are recovering with the aid of improved management.”
If the poor “little” guys just weren’t so darned tasty…
The largest grouper, the “jewfish” has recently been renamed the “goliath grouper”.
Overall, groupers get a score of: (Dr. Seuss would be particularly sad.)
It isn’t always that simple to make a smart choice. Take the salmon for example…
“ ATLANTIC SALMON in the U.S. are endangered. All Atlantic salmon sold in the U.S. is farmed. The high environmental costs of farming salmon include water pollution, spread of diseases to wild populations, high content of wild fish in feed, and overuse of antibiotics.”
“ Salmon farming is one of the most advanced forms of aquaculture. Farms growing salmon employ biologists, nutritionists, ecologists, veterinarians, geneticists and engineers to manage every stage of production. This attention to detail allows us to track the production of salmon from egg, to harvest, and onto you, the customer.”
Serving Size about 4 oz. (Raw Portion) (110g) Servings Per Product Varies Nutrition Facts Calorie s 200 Calories from Fat 120 Amount Per Serving % Daily Value Total Fat 13g 20% Saturated Fat 2.5g 12% Cholesterol 40mg 14% Sodium 55mg 2% Total Carbohydrate 0g 0% Dietary Fiber 0g 0% Sugars 0g 0% Protein 22g ~ 35% Vitamin A 4% Calcium 6% Vitamin C 8% Iron 4% Source of Data: Independent Laboratory Review, 2003
Farmed salmon (particularly Atlantic) get a score of:
“ ALASKA SALMON has been blessed with good management and fairly healthy habitat. Alaska salmon remain abundant. However, there are concerns that hatchery programs have adverse effects on wild salmon populations.”
Others scoring a green fishy: “ FARMED MOLLUSKS such as clams, mussels oysters and bay scallops are a top choice. Shellfish are filter feeders and don’t require fishmeal or fish oil for food. When farmed using suspended bags, nets or cages -as opposed to being dredged- mollusks are a smart choice.”
STRIPED BASS - wild and farmed MAHI-MAHI (dolphin fish) - pole & troll caught ALBACORE & YELLOWFIN TUNA - pole & troll caught
“ With a single bluefin worth as much as $150,000 on the Tokyo market, Italian and Russian organized crime is now involved, U.N. experts say.”
ORANGE ROUGHY - live over 100 years, don’t mature until 20 CHILEAN SEABASS - very high demand U.S. ROCKFISH - management efforts not proving successful
ATLANTIC COD - decades of overfishing, no signs management works SHRIMP, IMPORTED - multiple problems and very poor management SNAPPERS - management poor to nonexistent
“ SHARKS from outside the U.S. are a particularly poor choice. Slow growth and low birth rates, combined with poor management, have made shark populations victim of widespread overfishing and bycatch. Sharks swim past national boundaries, yet no international management exists.”