The true cost of shrimp is finally gaining wider market awareness. With over 90% of America’s favorite seafood being imported, mostly from imperfect Asian shrimp farms, and after the recent expose of slave labor, a Consumer Reports special report concerns the dubious safety of imported shrimp. “Bacteria and algae can begin to grow and disease can set in, prompting farmers to use drugs and other chemicals that can remain on the shrimp and seep into the surrounding environment,” says Consumer Reports’ Urvashi Rangan, Ph.D. The simple answer is to support traditional American fishing communities, and buy wild domestic shrimp.
A large and stable aggregation of endangered North Atlantic right whales has been documented in Cape Cod Bay. The Division of Marine Fisheries is issuing a High Risk Advisory in this area due to the number of whales, their behavior, and their proximity to vessel traffic. Approximately 60 whales were seen surface and sub-surface feeding. With a total population of approximately 550, right whales are the most endangered large whale in the North Atlantic.
In another sign of rising water temperature in the Gulf of Maine, black sea bass have been finding their way into lobster traps. Historically, black sea bass have been found between Cape Cod, MA, and Cape Hatteras, NC. Fishery management plans instituted in 2002, after the stock was declared to be overfished, have allowed their numbers to return to sustainable levels, and management rules are now being formulated for landing black sea bass in Maine, effectively creating a new commercial fishery.
Scientists in England have discovered the secret of why lobsters turn red when cooked, finding that a chemical in the shell called astaxantin is behind the change of hue. Professor John Helliwell, who led the team which carried out the research, said: “It is a scientific curiosity, but it may also have important applications in the real world. It could be used in food stuffs to help people know when food has been cooked properly; a dot on the food that changes color when it reaches a certain temperature could be used.”
Wonders never cease.
All the best,
from the Dimin Family and the Sea to Table team