Feeding fish

New testing methods are being implemented for fish raised on farms that have a greater chance of becoming contaminated with pesticides due to the unnatural plant-based diet now becoming a replacement for oceanic food sources, according to an article in Science Daily.

Posing human health risks, pesticides are commonly used on the plant material fed half of the fish consumed in America, which are raised in dense fish ‘farms’, making aquaculture the fastest growing segment of the global food industry. To supplement the fast-expanding farmed fish industry, fishmeal is being replaced with soy, corn and canola—three of the most commonly genetically engineered crops grown on U.S. soil—heavily sprayed with pesticides such as Monsanto’s glyphosate-based Roundup.

Now, a new test method out of Germany can determine whether or not chemicals have built up in farmed fish from exposure to pesticides. Designed to identify the residue in fish tissue, fat-soluble degradation products that are left behind after the fish metabolizes the food have a higher chance of accumulating in the fish, according to researchers from the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IME in Schmallenberg, Germany. They tested their method with carp and rainbow trout commonly bred in farms, “leaving no stone unturned,” according to researcher Dr. Dieter Hennecke; and just in time, as the European Commission is about to publish new requirements for fish and pesticides: All producers or importers will be required to register pesticides coming into Europe and must prove that it cannot accumulate in fish.

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Image: tsechuen26