Do You Really Want to Eat That Farm-Raised Shrimp?


Anyone who’s read End of the Line or Bottomfeeder knows that farm-raised shrimp tend to be dodgy. Not only from the standpoint of sustainability (much of Thailand’s coast has been despoiled by the industry, and traditional fishing villages obliterated to make way for new shrimp lagoons), but from the standpoint of our own health.

Just how bad the situation is for America’s most popular seafood is made clear in a new article posted in by Jill Richardson. According to her, not only are shrimp farming methods spectacularly unsustainable, the shrimp themselves are tainted. In examining farm raised shrimp, researchers found “162 separate species of bacteria with resistance to 10 different antibiotics.”

She also reiterates what we already know about sustainability, and adds to the horror, noting that each pound of farm-raised shrimp is fed 1.4 pounds of wild fish (usually by-catch) to reach maturity. And the effluvia from the shrimp lagoons is dumped in the ocean. Even wild shrimp are caught by unsustainable trawling methods. For shrimp lovers, the news couldn’t be worse.


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