The city of Vancouver, in British Columbia, Canada, isn’t eating the seafood it thinks it is, based on a study by a university there, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation reports.
Researchers at the University of British Columbia (UBC) say they studied the deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) of some 300 samples of fish bought in grocery stores and sushi restaurants in the city’s metro area. Using a barcoding method and extensive library of fish DNA developed by the University of Guelph, in Ontario, they say they found widespread fraud.
Red snapper was the most commonly mislabeled fish, Xiaonan Lu, a UBC associate professor, reportedly told the CBC. In 100% of the cases, the fish was actually tillapia or rockfish, he said.
Lu's team is working on a device that will help analyze fish DNA faster, according to the article. It’s a spectrometer that weighs about two kilograms and costs about $20,000 to make. One day he hopes for the technology to be more affordable and accessible to the public.