One of our customers asked me this week, “Is our salmon certified mercury-free?”
So I called Josh, over at Wild Alaska Salmon and Seafood, and here’s what he told me.
Yes, good question! Actually, there is no such thing as a wild caught mercury free fish! All fish caught in their natural environment (wild caught) contain some level of toxin, including mercury. Now, this toxin level can vary due to first, the area of fishing and second, the species of fish.
We fish the Naknek region of Bristol Bay. This is an area of the Bering Sea that is actually VERY clean in relation to toxicity levels of the oceans. This is because the Alaskan Peninsula acts as a natural land barrier to the Pacific and Asian currents that pass along the Pacific Northwest, thus creating a very clean water environment. So low toxicity levels already exist in our fishing area.
Next, the Sockeye Salmon, because of the fact that its main diet consists of red algae and plankton, is considered the “vegetarian” of the salmon species. It does not feed on other larger fish, so it doesn’t ingest the toxins from those fish. Sockeye is considered one of the safest species to eat due to the very low level of toxicity, including mercury.
But again, our oceans are pretty dirty (unfortunately) so there is no escaping toxicity levels for ANY wild caught fish, including our salmon. This is why recommended dietary guidelines are eating 6 to 8oz. portions at the most 2 to 3 times per week.
I hope this helps and thanks,
So the honest answer is no, it’s not strictly certified mercury-free. But we’re doing our level best to ensure that our salmon comes from areas that are among the safest in the world. And ain’t nobody doing it any better than that.