UK fish and chip shops have been unknowingly selling endangered shark, DNA tests have revealed.
Out of the researcher’s sample, 90 percent of huss, rock eel, flake, and rock salmon, which are commonly sold in restaurants and fish and chip shops, were found to be spiny dogfish – an endangered shark that cannot be legally caught in European waters.
‘Almost impossible’ for consumers to know what they’re buying
Scientists at the University of Exeter used a DNA barcoding technique in their investigation summarising that it’s ‘almost impossible’ for consumers to actually know what they’re buying.
The study concludes: Whilst little mislabelling was identified among fresh and frozen products, full compliance with EU labeling legislation was not observed.”
Catherine Hobbs, the first author of the paper, said: “People might think they’re getting a sustainably sourced product when they’re actually buying a threatened species.
“There are also health issues. Knowing what species you are buying could be important in terms of allergies, toxins, mercury content and the growing concern over microplastics in the marine food chain.”