Is there a Difference Between Farm Raised and Wild Salmon?
It’s a well-known fact that eating fish is a healthful and easy way to add more good fats into our diet. Whether it’s raw or cooked, salmon, along with other fatty fishes are a great nutritional source of omega-3 fatty acids. However, I’m often asked in my counseling sessions what the difference is, from a nutritional standpoint, between farm-raised and wild salmon?
The Truth About Farm-Raised Salmon: It’s reported that farmed-raised salmon, unable to feed from a natural ecosystem found in our oceans, are fed chicken parts, cardboard, cow parts, and cornmeal. And, to make matters worse, the Environmental Working Group reported that farm-raised salmon have 16 times the amount of PCBs as wild salmon, 4 times the levels in beef, and 3.4 times the levels in other seafood. PCBs have been linked to an increased rate of cancer and birth defects. Apparently, farm-raised salmon are given more antibiotics (by weight) than any other livestock. Because of the high fat content in their feed, farm-raised salmon actually contain 70% more fat than wild salmon (fat that is not healthful). Lastly, farm-raised salmon are given dyes to color their flesh to make them more visually appealing to the consumer. Suffice it to say, choose wild when eating salmon! (www.davidsuzuki.org)
Salmon is a healthy food choice, full of great stuff like omega-3 fatty acids that are good for our hearts. So wild salmon is a healthier choice. Best salmon choices: Wild Chum, Wild Pink, Wild Sockeye, Coho and Chinook. When fresh, wild salmon is out of season, choose canned wild salmon, the next best choice. And, next time you’re eating out at a restaurant, confirm with your server that the salmon they’re serving is wild. Farm-raised salmon is often referred to as ‘fresh’ salmon on menus.