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ny rebel
03:48 PM on 09/27/2013
I remember warnings about farm-raised salmon having PCB contamination (this was probably a good decade ago). I look for only the wild caught, but you can never be sure of where your food comes from.
03:08 PM on 09/27/2013
Fish Oil is also causing over harvesting. We should stick to the oldest food in the world to get our Omega-3's, Phytoplankton.
03:06 PM on 09/27/2013
Supplements like Fish Oil also create a large demand for fish. We need to look at more sustainable supplements for Omega-3's, like Phytoplankton.
roger stillick
07:28 PM on 09/29/2013
AHL, taking Krill for supplements is illegal, on all of the world's Oceans except the Ant-Arctic due to the need for krill to be in the food chain for Human food Fish production, world wide...
IMHO= taking krill in the Ant-Arctic results in starving the Penguins to extinction...currently only China, Japan, and Russia take South Pole krill... China and Japan extracts the oil...Russia eats them as a popular fast food...only from the Ant-arctic...bad idea, we need to protect Penguins...RS.
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04:27 AM on 09/30/2013
Better yet, go out in your yard, if you have one, and eat the purslane that is likely to be growing somewhere nearby. It has more omega 3 than anything other plant, 8.5mg for every gram and is rich in vitamin E, C, and beta carotene as well as magnesium, folate, lithium, calcium, iron, potassium, and protein.

It is great as garnish on a salad and we're using it to make pesto. It grows in bad soil and helps improve it, aids in moisture retention, is very drought resistant, and acts as a companion crop for things such as corn as it aids other plant roots to get through hard soil. It also appears to have anti-cancer properties and does have many other medicinal uses such as insect bites.

Strangely though, in the US we consider any plant that grows well on its own to be undesireable and thus a weed. Our great grandparents used it and much of the rest of the world sees it as food and medicine.

So, one of the best sources of Omega 3s is free and right outside of our doors and requires NO FOSSIL FUELS or any other to fertilze, tranport, culivate, or preserve. And, it grows in most places without requiring any watering.

Purslane is an overlooked saviour of a plant.
11:06 AM on 09/27/2013
Why not skip the fish all together and opt for a plant-based diet instead? Ted Danson, one of the authors is a vegan, so I wonder why they didn't promote this option which is the best option for those serious about saving our oceans.
09:56 PM on 09/27/2013
Excellent point.
It doesn't have to be like this.
01:02 PM on 09/29/2013
The thesis of this article wasn't "What is the best diet for our planet" but "Farmed salmon are not sustainable (if you are going to eat salmon)." Start pushing the vegan option and you lose your readers who aren't ready for that, but might be open to making a better salmon choice. Baby steps, thrugreeneyez, baby steps! ;)
10:34 AM on 09/27/2013
Not a farmed salmon eater but...what wild fish would they eat if the salmon were wild and how much of the fish would they consume in the wild?
12:49 PM on 09/27/2013
Conversion ratio of food in wild (North Pacific) salmon is about 10 to one. In the case of pen-raised South American fish this comparison is less relevant because salmon aren't native in the area and presumably haven't integrated into the marine ecosystem (although they and trout were introduced in Chilean streams almost a hundred years ago).
01:01 PM on 09/28/2013
Good question . I read that it takes 10 pounds of wild fish to create one pound of wild carnivorous fish such as salmon as opposed to the 1.2 to 1 global average conversion ratio for farmed salmon.
This is not a surprise as the wild fish spends much energy on hunting food and its reproductive cycle. Makes you wonder where the sustainability lies.
10:17 AM on 09/27/2013
Farmed salmon don't taste very good, at all. Why eat it?
09:55 AM on 09/27/2013
Amen! Thanks Ted and Andy! Junkiest, crappiest Post reporting I've seen in ages. They should be embarrassed that they mindlessly and thoughtlessly spewed forth the industry line. Farmed salmon is not a sustainable or smart alternative to wild salmon and NEVER will be as long as the net pens are open in the water, chemicals are poured in to manage diseases and they catch wild fish for feed--thereby depriving the entire ocean ecosystem of incredibly important forage fish.
04:56 PM on 09/28/2013
Perhaps you'd liks to cite some science on the subject? Net pens are not even close to being as bad as the press would have it. Why don't you also research North Carolina hog farms? And fish meal goes mostly to chicken feed, and to feed Fluffy your cat. Yes, there will be a limit to the availability of fish meal, just as there will be a limit to arable land and water for agriculture. Salmon and fish are the most efficient producers of animal protein, better than cows, pigs, and lamb, and aquaculture is much less harmful to the environment than the husbandry of those.
roger stillick
07:47 PM on 09/29/2013
f, over 1/2 of all fish produced in SE Asia are farmed, since forever...
IMHO= this is mostly marketing hype for brands like Copper River...RS.
06:28 AM on 09/27/2013
so glad this article was written. wild fish are much superior to farmed fish.
06:06 AM on 09/27/2013
This article is especially odd in comparing the amount of feed it takes to raise the fish. While it's true that a farmed fish takes a few pounds of fish to produce one pound of farmed fish, it's even higher for a wild fish that has to chase it's meal down, burning much more energy. The ratio is about 4:1 for farmed salmon, and about 10:1 for a wild fish. So on balance, consuming farmed fish uses less valuable ocean resource than consuming wild salmon.

As for the 'wild' salmon, when you further consider that the state of Alaska produces more smolts-billions each year- in it's hatcheries than in all the private hatcheries that feed into the Norwegian, Chilean, Canadian, and Scottish farmed industries combined, well just think about how those billions of smolts affect the food web of the Gulf of Alaska. In fact the chum salmon fishery in Alaska, is the most dependent on hatchery production of the species spawned in the Alaska hatcheries. Nearly 70% of the Alaskan chum catch is of hatchery origin, which is also the largest segment of the fresh and frozen salmon seafood market in the US.
Spiritual Messenger of the Earth
11:45 AM on 09/27/2013
No comparison. Hatchery fish are released very young and spend the majority of their life wild. If we didn't use this method, some of our fish would not have survived human activities such as damming and pollution. The numbers give them a fighting chance. Farmed fish spend their entire lives in captivity.
03:17 PM on 09/28/2013
Yes, the results are pretty clear. A wild salmon consumes more ocean resources than a farmed salmon. That was kind of the point.
04:57 PM on 09/28/2013
You mean like chicken and pigs?
I will NOT use Facebook to login
02:17 AM on 09/27/2013
You can ignore it if you want to, but it is not the same, does not taste the same or "act" the same in our bodies as the natural or organic, if you will. I want the natural order of the planet to be supported more. Let us all do more to help in this way. It's no skin off our noses to pitch in and help. Just the opposite.
I will NOT use Facebook to login
02:17 AM on 09/27/2013
Very grateful to see this article. Good JOB! Well done. Thank you for stating the obvious, but so clearly that any fish lover can understand we need to stay natural, go with the flow of the planet more, restoring the natural order of our waters, soil, and air as much as we can possibly do. Too many of us are just consuming blindly, without awareness, without a thought for what's being done to our food chains. It is true. Much has changed to our waters, our oceans, lakes, streams, rivers. But we really do have a stake in this game and that stake is our very own health and the health of this beautiful planet. Why don't more of us join in and see how we can turn the tide back to a more natural state? I hope people will participate more. Get involved in writing and calling policy makers to get control of the abusive situation going on. So many parts of our lives are being affected by the crooked dealings of those who are nothing but money makers, all in for the game of grabbing as much profit as they can, no matter what the process does to others, to the wildlife, the soil we grow our food in, the air we breath, the waters we must, without question, be able to drink. Genetically Modified seeds, modified fish (farmed rather than natural habitat), all of it matters.
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02:16 AM on 09/27/2013
Isn't mackerel heavy with mercury?
04:58 PM on 09/28/2013
Not nearly as much as wild salmon or wild tuna.
01:31 AM on 09/27/2013
I lubs you Ted, miss Bored to Death on HBO!
01:10 AM on 09/27/2013
Consuming farmed salmon is not only a health risk due to PCB and other contaminant levels up to ten times higher than wild salmon , but there are also other unknown potential health risks due to the fact the Canadian Food Inspection Agency is now opting to declare diseased farmed fish "fit for human consumption" and allowing them to be sold in stores for Canadians and their families to eat. In the past, these fish would have been culled.

In Feb of 2013 "240,000 Atlantic salmon with infectious salmon anemia — a disease it says poses no risk to human heath" were allowed to go to market. "The ruling is the first time the CFIA has opted not to destroy fish carrying the virus since it started regulating the fish farming industry in 2005."

If people only knew what they were consuming - they would never go near farmed salmon.
01:06 AM on 09/27/2013
The argument against open pen salmon farms is very strong.

Wherever salmon is farmed in open net pens alongside wild salmon and trout, wild fish suffer reductions in abundance as a result of farm impacts — by more than 50% per generation on average.

Ford JS, Myers RA (2008) A global assessment of salmon aquaculture impacts on wild salmonids. PLoS Biol 6(2): e33. doi:10.1371/journal.pbio.0060033