Consume consciously - Eat wisely to help change the world!
"If there is to be an ecologically sound society, it will have to come from the grass roots up, not from the top down." Paul Hawken
"How we eat determines to a considerable extent, how the world is used" Wendell Berry
The origin of your food – including how it was grown, raised, or caught – affects the health and productivity of our ocean. Use your power as a consumer to send a strong message that you support sustainable farming and fishing.
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1. The Ethical Choice
Vital Choice salmon live their entire lives as nature intended, and are only harvested as they approach the end of their 4 year life-cycle. We guarantee that all our fish come from carefully managed, sustainable fisheries. Alaskan salmon are endorsed as a “Best Seafood Choice” by numerous environmental organizations, including the Marine Stewardship Council, the Audubon Society’s Living Oceans Campaign, the Monterey Bay Aquarium and the David Suzuki Foundation. Alaska's wild salmon runs are among the healthiest on earth. Each year, tens of millions of Alaska salmon return to spawn in their natal rivers. Pristine habitat and well-managed commercial fisheries contribute to the preservation of Alaska’s most precious sustainable natural resource. In September 2000, Alaska salmon received the distinction of becoming the first U.S. fishery to be certified sustainable by the Marine Stewardship Council. Vital Choice sells only sustainably harvested seafood products.
2. Natural Wild Diet Without Antibiotics
Vital Choice Wild salmon that grow naturally and are harvested from Alaskan waters contain no antibiotics or other added chemicals such as pesticides, growth hormones and artificial coloring agents. These salmon are among the purest fish found anywhere. In fact, the Alaska Division of PublicHealth continues to strongly recommend that “pregnant women, women who are breast feeding, women of childbearing age, and young children continue unrestricted consumption of fish from Alaskan waters.”
3. Free Range Fish - The Fit Fish
In contrast to the vast majority of salmon available today, Vital Choice fish spend their lives feeding on the sea’s natural foods while migrating thousands of miles against the strong cold currents of the North Pacific. Of the millions of young Pacific salmon that annually begin this demanding ocean odyssey, only the strongest, healthiest fish will reach harvest age. The result is a truly superior fish with a better flavor, texture and nutritional profile than any captive-raised farmed fish.
Wild Salmon feed naturally on Plankton which imbue them with the rich red pigment astaxanthin which not only gives them their highly recognized and prized brilliant red trademark but also shares its healthy antioxidant benefits that are imparted with it. (100 times more potent than Vitamin E)
Omega 3s build up in the food chain beginning with the algae that the plankton feed upon which then get passed on to the sockeye salmon so Wild Sockeye Salmon are one of the richest sources of these healthy fats. Generally the cold-water fish have higher levels of Omega 3 oils than do warmer water fish as the former have an overall higher fat content as part of their body's insulation. The fact that Omega 3s are liquid at a lower temperature makes them suitable for inner "lubrication" in creatures who live in frigid environments.
Healthier, Happier Wild Salmon for Healthier, Happier Humans! Hannah
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1. The Cheap Choice
According to the David Suzuki Foundation, salmon aquaculture can be bad for the environment: “Every day British Columbia's aquaculture industry dumps the same amount of raw sewage into the ocean as a city of half a million people. High concentrations of fish waste and drugs, along with drug-resistant microbes, pass through netcages to settle and destroy life on the ocean floor. Much of it drifts throughout the marine environment, contaminating shellfish beds and other habitats and spreads disease up the food chain. To find out more go to Ocean Pollution.” For more information, visit the David Suzuki Foundation’s website at www.davidsuzuki.org.
Farmed salmon are categorically rated “Avoid.”
2. Fed Artificial diet With Antibiotics
According to the David Suzuki Foundation, farmed salmon can be dangerous to eat: “In an attempt to control disease and parasites among farmed salmon, powerful antibiotics and other drugs are dumped directly into open netcages. According to The Audubon’s Living Oceans Campaign, “farmed salmon are fed more antibiotics per pound of ‘livestock’ than are any other farmed animal.” In fact, 23 million pounds of antibiotics are used annually in US animal production. Regulating the overuse of antibiotics is a serious problem in the fish farming industry, where salmon are raised in remote locations like Chile and British Columbia. This largely unregulated use of antibiotics—the same drugs used to treat human infections—has already led to the development of drug-resistant "super-bugs". This poses grave risks not only to the wider marine ecosystem, but also to fish farm workers and to consumers of farmed salmon who may be affected by antibiotic-resistant bacteria.
3. Farmed Fish - The Flabby Fish
More salmon for consumption are now raised in captivity than caught in the wild. These fish are fed corn meal, soy and canola oil. When the fish are fed these foods, the concentration of their fats turns far away from the ideal beneficial 3:1 omega-6 to omega-3 ratio and turns closer to the 20:1 found in commercially-raised beef. This means that salmon raised in salt water pens contain substantially less omega-3 oil than wild salmon, and can no longer be considered a good source of omega-3 essential fatty acids unless clearly identified as 'wild caught'. Also, pigments are added to the artificially-raised salmon to ensure a pink color. [Seattle Times, September 02, 2001]
Thus although the Omega 3 fat levels are lower, the overall fat content is actually around 2 1/2 times higher. You could say that "couch potatoe" farmed fish suffer from poor lifestyle habits just as we do, though sadly for them they are not given the choice of freedom that is their natural station in life, but are kept in crowded pens where they end up damaging each other's fins as they jostle together in the limited space. The poor condition of the tell-tale jagged fins can be observed when you buy the fish - a testament to its sad captive life.
"Salmon are like men - Too soft a life is not good for them"James De Coquet