Should Any Of Us Ever Eat Fish Again?

My post here is prompted by a comment I read in another thread–the Red Flags On Menus.

As a family we decided, we don’t eat Swai. We don’t eat Tilapia. We don’t eat Swordfish. We don’t eat Shrimp from SE Asia. But…our own state government(s) are advising us to avoid certain locally caught fish. Here is the bad news just from Michigan–a state that once had the greatest fishery in the entire world.,5885,7-339-71548_54783_54784_54785_58671-296074--,00.html

I don’t eat pretty much the same stuff that you don’t eat, and likely for similar reasons- farmed seafood, mercury, etc.

I still eat sardines, Alaskan wild caught fishes like salmon, cod, etc.

But look at that Michigan advisory documents- mercury, PCB, dioxin, a pretty depressing read. But DDT? I thought its banned decades ago?

1 Like

As I understand it, the Great Lakes watershed is hundreds of thousands of square miles in area in both the U.S. and Canada. Out of that vastness, the lumber industry and mining “harvested” resources beginning in the 1800s. The offal left behind by ore mining and board cutting stayed in place in the ground and in local waters over the last two centuries. And it migrates into the Great Lakes year-by-year just because nature always moves stuff.

DDT, like pcbs, were banned because they break down slowly and are persistent in the environment. So much so that they’re still in our fish 30+ years later. Crazy.

Between sustainability, toxicity issues, and omega ratios, Pepperidge farm goldfish are the way to go :slight_smile:

It’s bizarre to see fast casual “bowls,” gluten free, and paleo fads fuel the popularity of poke, while largely ignoring sustainability and various health concerns.


Living here on the Monterey Bay I eat fish . And will continue . I use the Seafood watch program from the Monterey Aquarium . I also occasionally eat the trout I catch when fly fishing on the Mc Cloud and upper Sacramento . Mostly I catch and release.

1 Like

I was under the false impression that DDT is mostly gone for good because the eggshells don’t seem to be an issue any more. But i guess its still enough of a level to cause problems over long exposure.

Can’t you make the same argument with sushi/sashimi? Arguably more people eat them than poke.

Good point! It’s possible that Raw fish is a zero sum game, and crappy sushi places will be replaced with poke bars.

Maybe someone should come up with a new restaurant concept- crappy sushi/ poke bar, where one can have Hawaiian and Japanese all in one meal.

I don’t eat any fish, i’ve been vegetarian for a very long time now so i have no pony in this race.
But i have to say that sushi spots like the (vegan) Beyond Sushi are promising ways to enjoy sushi yet fish-less. No, it’s not the same even a little bit, but i think that’s why they’re so successful- and it’s certainly more omnis than veg*ns eating there


The government here advice people not to have more than 2 meal of fish each week.

We buy fresh anchovies, sardines, cod, mackerel in weekly basis, we tried to avoid farmed fish as much as possible. When wild fish isn’t possible, organic is the second choice (they are still farmed fish!)

But we won’t give up eating sushi and sashimi, we love them too much. We have this toxic and radioactive meal once every few months, also for the sustainability issue.

I guess we need to have a balance between mental and physical health. If there is no more pleasure in eating, I think I prefer to live a shorter life.


Now this is a courageous statement!

And the latest from health officials in a Great Lakes state:

You might notice a cavalier attitude expressed here by some fisherman. That’s very real here where I live.

“We only catch and keep Perch and Bluegill.”

Wow! That menu looks amazing. I’ve never seen a restaurant that comes close to that kind of veg sushi in my travels.

1 Like

I live on a small island - none of us live more than 70 miles from the sea.

We’re surrounded by fish - much of it eminently sustainable. So, it’s disappointing when fishmongers (and, particularly, fish counters at supermarkets) offer so little choice. It’s also disappointing how small a list most restaurants draw from - ubiquitous seabass, salmon, cod of iffy sustainablity, tuna, maybe monkfish - but that’s often your lot. So, where’s the likes of sustainable stuff like coley, dab and pollock? Do I have to go to Spain to eat hake? And why do we export so much shellfish to Spain instead of eating it here.

1 Like

Sometimes when I’m eating sushi I,begin to wonder if there will be any fish left in the ocean for my future grandchildren. And then I lose my appetite.

@Harters I hear what you’re saying about local fish. I live in L.A., and we have wild spot prawns and uni in Santa Barbara, four species of tuna in San Diego, not to mention ling cod and sea bass. Good luck finding these in supermarkets.

I think the fish at going to decide this for us

I used to have a volunteer job handing out fish shares at one of the pick-up points for a community-supported fishery supplied by day boats working out of Gloucester, Massachusetts, until they dropped that pick-up location. The variety of fish was also surprisingly limited. Typical were flounders and other small flatfish, haddock, pollock, perch, and hake. Sometimes cod, monkfish, bluefish, striped bass. I see that lately they have added swordfish and tuna - I didn’t think dayboats caught these, so either I’m wrong or they are no longer using just dayboats. Some of these fish are of questionable sustainability, although this is supposed to be part of the fishery’s raison d’etre, and the customers are for the most part folks who would welcome less mainstream fish species.