current SEAFOOD CONSUMPTION
Per the USDA’s Economic Research Service, Americans are eating less than the recommended amount of seafood. When they are eating seafood Americans are choosing a relatively limited number of seafood products. Shrimp, salmon, canned tuna, tilapia, and Alaska pollock made up nearly three-quarters of total US seafood consumption.
Consumption of seafood may be limited by a number of factors, including a lack of awareness about the health benefits of seafood; unfamiliarity with preparation methods; higher retail prices, on average, compared with meat and poultry; and concerns about food safety and mislabeling of imported seafood products.
Because Americans’ seafood consumption is below dietary recommendations, education about the benefits of fish and new ways to prepare seafood can encourage seafood consumption. From fish tacos to smoked salmon pizza to shrimp sushi rolls, are just some of the new ways to eat seafood.
recommended Seafood consumption
The 2015-20 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, and supporting USDA MyPlate food group targets, recommend that Americans eat a variety of protein foods, including at least two servings of seafood per week, as part of a healthy eating pattern low in added sugars, saturated fats, and sodium. For an average 2,000-calorie-per-day diet, that advice translates into at least 8 ounces of fish and shellfish per week, or about 20 percent of total consumption from the protein foods group (meat, poultry, seafood, eggs, legumes, nuts, seeds, and soy foods).
seafood HEALTH benefits for ALL AGES
Seafood (fish and shellfish) is a nutrient-dense source of dietary protein, which is relatively low in calories and saturated fat, compared to some other protein sources, and rich in key nutrients, including vitamins A, B12, and D; iron; zinc; magnesium; phosphorous; and potassium. Seafood is the primary food source of the beneficial omega-3 fatty acids, EPA and DHA.
According to the American Heart Association, including fish in a healthy diet can help keep your brain sharp. Brain health enables thought, planned action and emotional connections that impact the daily lives and progress of individuals, families and communities.
Eating fish helps maintain a healthy heart by lowering blood pressure due to the Omega 3 fatty acids; aids healthy brain function and infant development during pregnancy; may decrease the risk of depression, ADHD, Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, and diabetes; is an excellent source of protein and Vitamin D, among other benefits.
USA-FISH: us seafood production
In addition, USA-Fish will raise species of fish that are heribivores, like talapia and catfish, so that millions of fish will not have to be consumed in order for our fish to be raised.
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See below for more information about indoor fish farming, including facts about mercury.
On May 7, 2020, the White House issued the Executive Order on Promoting American Seafood Competitiveness and Economic Growth “in order to strengthen the American economy; improve the competitiveness of American industry; ensure food security; provide environmentally safe and sustainable seafood; support American workers;” because “America needs a vibrant and competitive seafood industry to create and sustain American jobs, put safe and healthy food on American tables, and contribute to the American economy.”
Indoor Fish Farming is Better for the Environment
Unlike ocean-bound or other outdoor fish farms, indoor fish farming are not breeding grounds for disease. Indoor fish farming involves recirculating aquaculture systems (RAS) that are very sustainable. They are often considered environmentally friendly because they require less water and produce less waste. The USA-Fish systems will allow for automatic collection and processing of fish wastes. The fish will only interact with each other in stabilized water, so disease is not introduced or passed on.
Indoor Fish Farming Makes Fish More Affordable
On the economic side, farm-raised fish are bred to make fish less expensive and more readily available to consumers. About 90% of fish consumed by Amercians is imported, increasing fish prices and contributing to the country’s trade deficit. Also, exported fish is much more inconsistent than indoor raised fish, and is susceptible to weather patterns and biological factors, like disease. By increasing America’s aquaculture industry, USA-Fish wants to increase American food production and provide safer fish products and American jobs.
Indoor Fish Farming Provides Nutritious and Tasty Fish
Farm-raised fish have more omegas than fish caught in the wild, due to their higher fat content. As for texture, farmed fish tend to have a little bit more fat in their diet, so they might be a little more tender or softer, compared to a wild-caught fish which may be a little leaner. In some taste tests, farm raised fish had a superior taste profile compared to wild caught fish.
Indoor Farmed Raised Fish are Less Dangerous to Eat and Do Not Pose a Threat of Mercury Poisoning
As a rule, RAS operations do not normally utilize antibiotics and USA-Fish will demand superior management practices to prevent disease, so that antibiotics will not be necessary. And unlike wild-caught fish, indoor grown fish do not pose a threat of mercury poisoning, an increasing problem in fishes harvested in some areas of the world. Toxic methylmercury from the coal-burning power plants that rim the Northern Pacific Ocean in the US, Japan, China, and Mexico can enter the bodies of large wild caught fish, while fish hatched and raised indoors do not face this threat.