retail news in context, analysis with attitude

US Rep. Edward Markey and Rep. Barney Frank, both Democrats from Massachusetts, have introduced the Safety and Fraud Enforcement for Seafood (SAFE Seafood) Act, said to "address the growing problem of seafood fraud. If passed, the bill would help stop seafood fraud by requiring full traceability for all seafood sold in the U.S., ensuring that consumers can follow their seafood from boat to plate," according to Oceana, the international advocacy group that endorsed the legislation.

The Boston Globe reports that "the bill would require fish packers, supermarkets, and restaurants to provide details about all seafood, including the scientific name, the market name, and the geographic region where the fish was caught. The proposed legislation also calls for greater cooperation between the Food and Drug Administration and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration so they share more information about seafood substitution, create a public list of mislabeling offenders, and avoid conducting duplicate inspections at seafood plants."

The Globe also notes that the legislation is being introduced "nearly a year after a Globe report revealed widespread seafood substitution in restaurants across Massachusetts. Results of the five-month investigation published last fall found nearly half of the fish tested at 134 restaurants and supermarkets was mislabeled. In many cases, less desirable and cheaper species took the place of fresh local fish."
KC's View:
My default position is to support traceability and transparency, and to believe that organizations that oppose it risk being seen as having something to hide, or not putting consumer interests first.