To Eat Or Not To Eat – that’s the salmon

From this report by 果籽 and several others in Chinese media, certain species of wild salmon or trout are infected with “worms”. Culinary guru Chua Lam has explained in another video that deep sea salmon are worm-free and hence safe to eat, but once they return to the rivers where they were born to spawn, they become infected with worms. Mr Chua pointed out that the Japanese are far more knowledgeable in sashimi safety and would never eat salmon raw.

Species that can be passed off as salmon are trout such as lake trout which live in freshwater lakes and rivers exclusively. There are others such as the rainbow trout which live out their lives in fresh water or spend two or three years at sea before returning to fresh water to spawn. The above video claims that it’s safer to consume farmed salmon which are raised under controlled conditions. This is the exact opposite of what activists from Western countries are revealing. Sure, wild salmon are also infected by pathogens and parasites, but the source of the problem lies in salmon farms which have imported infected eggs from Norway and serve as hotbeds for salmon diseases.

The pathogens are not worms but viruses and bacteria. Also worrying are harmful chemicals like astaxanthin, dioxine and drugs that prevent the sick fish from dying before harvesting.

Wild salmon populations have been declining in Canada. Some have died before spawning. The culprit? Salmon farms sanitised with antibiotics have released pathogens into the channels. Only the channel which did not have any fish farms had healthy salmon whose population has been increasing. The authorities have blocked scientists from investigating. The interest of the salmon farming industry seemed to outweigh the health of the natural environment. It was only after the disaster of 2009 that the government finally ordered an inquiry.

The ISA virus which causes “salmon flu” spread from Norway to Chile, devastating the salmon industry there. The virus has made its way to Canada. Positive test results for ISA became a federal secret and labs and scientists were penalised for revealing it. “The position of the government and the position of the corporations are almost identical”. It’s an amazingly familiar situation.

I like the way he said $poke$person. The video is not well edited but he did make some interesting comments. Below is a rather lengthy documentary exposing the darker side of the fish farming industry in general, covering panga farming in Vietnam to salmon farming in Norway.

What fish/seafood are safe to eat? Don’t be surprised if you find conflicting lists in various websites if you google for “safe fish to eat”. A fish listed in the safe group in one website can end up in the group to avoid in another site. After going through some of these sites, my own conclusion would be:

Wild-Caught Native Alaskan Salmon
Farmed Oysters
Sea bass
and I guess ikan bilis should make the list too

Fish to avoid would include shark, eel, swordfish, mackerel.