Seafood labels in Canada vague compared to U.S., Europe: environmental groups
In this Thursday, Dec. 10, 2015, photo, a rubber band used to keep handlers safe marks a lobster caught in American waters at the Maine Lobster Outlet in York, Maine. (AP / Robert F. Bukaty)
THE CANADIAN PRESS
Published Thursday, March 16, 2017 12:40PM ADT
HALIFAX -- Environmental groups are giving Canada's seafood labelling requirements an F grade due to their lack of details compared to American and European packaging standards.
The report card released today says Canada has the lowest standards among the three jurisdictions.
Colleen Turlo, a spokeswoman from the Halifax-based Ecology Action Centre, says basics like the species' scientific name, and where and how it was caught should be on the labels.
The group argues that "inadequate seafood labelling means consumers don't have adequate health and environmental information about the product."
The coalition says some seafood sellers and retailers are voluntarily labelling seafood more comprehensively, but the lack of uniform regulatory requirements means that only some consumers have the information they need to make informed decisions.
The coalition of environment groups, referred to as SeaChoice, and the Canadian Centre for Biodiversity Genomics says it is recruiting citizen science volunteers to conduct seafood genetic testing across Canada to check for fraud and mislabelling.