The Louisiana Seafood Promotion and Marketing Board encourages everyone to know better, eat better through The American Seafood Coast Guard, an initiative educating consumers about the benefit of domestic seafood. Many consumers assume the seafood they are getting in local stores and restaurants is always domestic, when, in fact, it fits that description only about 10 percent of the time.

Domestic seafood not only touts a superior flavor, but it also much safer than imported seafood. A significant amount of imported seafood contains harmful chemicals and is farm-raised. The first step for the consumer is knowing to ask questions and appreciating where purchased seafood comes from. That is the purpose behind the American Seafood Coast Guard campaign. Seafood’s point of origin has everything to do with how it tastes, its quality, and even its safety.

Recent attention about seafood traceability, lack of import regulations and unsafe toxic levels in fish from oversees, has increased the need for understanding the importance of responsibly raised U.S. seafood.

“Louisiana is a state made to produce seafood – we catch and supply the best shrimp, crab and oysters in the nation,” says Louisiana Lt. Gov. Billy Nungesser. “We know discerning consumers take the time enjoy the best products, from truffles and chilies to cheeses and wines. The America’s Seafood Coast Guard is the entity to demonstrate to those discerning consumers that quality of seafood is directly related to its origin, and the highest quality seafood is right in our backyard.”

The American Seafood Coast Guard aims to educate consumers of domestic seafood with every-day tips that can help the public identify the highest quality product including:

Know your labels; Country of Origin Labels are required for seafood sold in U.S.

Flip the bag; learn how to properly identify the Country of Origin Label.

Build relationships; find a reliable, knowledgeable retailer.

Ask about it; ask restaurants and establishments about the origin of the seafood served.

American seafood, and Louisiana Seafood in particular, is a premium product with a unique flavor that is a result of the waters where it lives and grows. Chefs nationwide including celebrity chef John Besh, swear by domestic seafood—its freshness, quality and flavor that bring value and diners to their restaurants day in and day out.

“My customers are all about quality, so for me it comes down to domestic American seafood,” Chef Besh says. “It has everything to do with the taste, quality and safety of the foods we like to eat.”

Domestic seafood, especially Louisiana seafood, is known worldwide for its superior flavor, quality and variety. Seventy-five percent of the U.S. commercial sea catch comes from estuaries. Louisiana’s estuaries, fed by the nutrient-rich Mississippi and Atchafalaya Rivers, are the seventh largest in the world and produce some of the highest quality product in the nation.

Additionally, the Louisiana Seafood Promotion and Marketing Board works with restaurants and retailers through various co-marketing programs to indicate support for the American Seafood Coast Guard. These programs help support those supporting domestic seafood in educating consumers about its value.

Louisiana’s 7,721 miles of shorelines contain an industry built on localized businesses that supply the nation with fresh, domestic product. The best tasting and highest quality seafood comes from America’s waterways. The American Seafood Coastguard encourages the public to educate themselves on how to properly identify and responsibly purchase domestic seafood.

Food Safety, Industry News, Sustainability