Roommates, if you’re like me and you order a seafood dish, you’re probably expecting it to be fresh! Unfortunately, that doesn’t happen all the time at restaurants. If you ordered Snapper over the last decade, there’s a strong chance you’ve received a lower-value fish. A 2019 study by conservation organization Oceana, conducted in the U.S., found that one in five fishes tested in restaurants and markets was mislabeled.
What does this mean for you? This means that consumers could be paying double the price for fish like wild-caught salmon but were served the farmed equivalent. To make matters worse, consumers may think they’re eating fresh-off-the-boat lobster, but the fish may have been frozen for months. One restaurant in the United Arab Emirates uses technology to help its customers learn the origin of their fish while they dine.
According to CNN, ‘Rockfish,’ a beachfront Italian restaurant in Dubai, is combating fish fraud by giving their customers a QR code with their order. This code links to a web page that informs customers of when and where their fish was caught, how it was transported and provides necessary certifications to verify that it was sustainably sourced. The Rockfish’s Executive Sous Chef, Marco Acquaroli, says there are many “fake products or fake naming” on menus around the world. “Here we are looking for freshness, quality, sustainability, and traceability,” he explained.
The restaurant partners with Seafood Souq, an e-commerce marketplace that connects buyers and sellers of fish from all around the globe. The company’s CEO and Co-Founder Sean Dennis explained, “Seafood is an industry that is wrought with not necessarily fraud but opacity or darkness within the supply chain.” He continued, “It is very difficult for buyers to know where they’re getting their seafood from.” In addition, Seafood Souq’s website states 1 in 5 seafood products are mislabelled globally, these can be endangered species, not fit for consumption, not fresh, or not sourced responsibly.
Roomies, should more restaurants use this seafood system?
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