(Video) What You Need to Know about Buying Seafood

Lack of Inspection and Oversight of Imported Seafood Adds to the Problem

Today, the vast majority of shrimp (over 90 percent) come from industrial shrimp farms off the coasts of India, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, and other countries where industry regulations may be less strict than the US.

For example, the US does not permit the use of antibiotics in shrimp farming, but many other nations use antibiotics in their operations.6 As noted in the featured video by Consumer Reports,7 it’s illegal to import shrimp raised on antibiotics into the US.

Antibiotics can hide lack of hygiene in the shrimp ponds, and overuse promotes antibiotic resistance. Yet in one recent test, Consumer Reports detected antibiotics in 11 of 342 samples of imported raw farmed shrimp, and lack of enforcement of the laws is part of the problem.

Bacteria were also detected on 60 percent of the shrimp tested, including bacteria that can cause staph infection and food poisoning, which is suggestive of poor hygiene among food processors.

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