The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) recently re-opened 5,130 square miles of Gulf waters to fishing and shrimping. However, some scientists worry that this decision came prematurely.
Gina Solomon, a senior scientist at the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), recently wrote that she was surprised to find that NOAA's data to determine if waters should be re-opened "included only 12 samples of shrimp, consisting of a grand total of 73 individual shrimp, caught from an area about the size of the State of Connecticut."
This sample size is not large enough to adequately assess whether a region is free of contaminants. Take action now, and tell NOAA and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to expand its testing of Gulf fish and shrimp in order to ensure seafood's safety.
- Communications Specialist/NOAA
- Deputy Commissioner/FDA
- Press Officer/FDA
It's come to our attention that NOAA recently re-opened 5,130 square miles of the Gulf of Mexico to fishing and shrimping. While everyone would like to see waters re-opened to fishing, it's distressing to see that the agency's publicly available data indicates that NOAA tested only 12 samples of shrimp (about 73 individual shrimp) before deeming that this region was safe for fishing and shrimping.
Ensuring Gulf seafood's safety requires testing more than a handful of shrimp. Please continue to test Gulf seafood and greatly expand your sample sizes before re-opening Gulf waters to shrimping and fishing.
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