Is your fish a fake? - Cleveland 19 News Cleveland, OH

Is your fish a fake?

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  • Study: 1/3 fish mislabeled

    Study: 1/3 fish mislabeled

    (CNN) - That red snapper you picked up at the grocery store may not be red snapper at all,  new study found a third of the seafood we buy is mislabeled. That's according to the environmental advocacy group,More >>
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It is something to consider the next time you buy fish. A study by Oceana, a conservation group, found that a full third of fish purchased in restaurants, supermarkets and sushi counters was mislabeled. Call it fish fraud. 

Jim Catanese is the president of Catanese Classic Seafoods in The Flats. They sell at the retail level in their shop but their focus is as a wholesaler to some of the areas finest restaurants and to Heinens Fresh Foods, and he agrees that mislabeling is a problem in the industry. 

"It hurts everybody, absolutely, people want to make more money so they want to sell something for what it isn't.  It happens all the time with salmon and it happens all the time with many different items like grouper as well," Catanese said.

Catanese gets around the problem simply by selling the whole fish, "We clearly sell it for what it is, we don't want to play any games," he said.

Oceana's study pointed out that the biggest problem with mislabeling was with Sushi. The motivation may be simple, sell something for more than it's really worth, but according to Catanese, it's a bad business practice.

"In the short term you make a quick buck, in the long term you ruin your reputation and ruin your business," he said.

For consumers, it's not that simple, you have to find a restaurant or retailer you really trust. It's cause for concern.

"It's a good question there are a lot of misleading labels on a lot of products in the world today," said Clevelander John Hayford, while shopping for fish.

Copyright 2013 WOIO. All rights reserved.

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