Mercury Content Study
In 2003, the Western Fishboat Owners Association (WFOA) and the Oregon Albacore Commission contracted with the Oregon State University Seafood Lab to conduct extensive sampling and testing of mercury content in troll-caught U.S. Albacore tuna. The results were presented at the January 25-26, 2004 Toxicology Conference in San Diego by Dr. Michael Morrissey and are summarized in the statement below.
Mercury Content in West Coast Troll-Caught Albacore Tuna (Thunnus alalunga)
Tomoko Okada M.S., Rosalee Rasmussen, M.S. and Michael T. Morrissey, PhD.
Oregon State University Seafood Laboratory, 2001 Marine Drive, Astoria, OR 97103
Ninety-one Albacore tuna (Thunnus alalunga) captured during the 2003 commercial fishing season were tested for mercury content in the fish muscle. Additional information such as location, weight, length, lipid and moisture content were also collected. The fish were harvested between 32.70 degrees north (off Southern California) and 48.30 degrees north (off the coast of British Columbia, Canada) from a period of July to November. Fish weight ranged from 3.14 to 11.62 kg (7 to 25.6 lbs) and length of 51 - 84 cm (20 - 33 inches). Mercury content was found to range from a low of 0.027 ppm (parts per million) to a high of 0.26 ppm in the samples tested. The average mercury content was 0.14 ppm which is well below the US FDA and Canadian standards (1.0 ppm and 0.50 ppm respectively). There was a positive correlation of length and weight of albacore with mercury content. There was no correlation with date of capture. Results indicate that West Coast troll-caught albacore has low levels of mercury in the edible flesh and are well within international standards for mercury levels in fish.
For full Mercury Study report click on the link below:
OSU Mercury Test Report 2004
More info... "Trolling for a market niche-smaller tuna's health hook" San Francisco Chronicle Click here