What is the Seafood Nutrition Partnership? The Seafood Nutrition Partnership (SNP) is a nonprofit organization with a mission to inspire a healthier America through partnerships that raise awareness about the essential nutritional benefits of eating seafood. We are addressing America’s public health crisis through a seafood-rich diet.
SNP has support from both the private and public sectors and is a member of the Clinton Global Initiative and the Non-communicable Disease Roundtable.
What do you mean by “America’s public health crisis”? Preventable diseases are the leading causes of death and disability in the United States. Seven in ten US deaths each year are from chronic diseases. Heart disease is the number-one killer of Americans, followed by cancer, stroke and diabetes.
Our diets affect our health more than anything else and mealtime presents a critical opportunity to protect and enhance our health. Unfortunately, many of us do not know what healthy means anymore, or our busy lives prevent us from making better, healthier choices.
How can seafood help solve America’s public health crisis? Seafood is a lean protein and significant research points to the health benefits of a seafood-rich diet – especially how seafood can enhance heart health and brain development.
The Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend seafood be eaten at least twice a week, as part of a balanced diet. This recommendation distinguishes seafood among the most-important foods for good health and the valuable role it can play in helping address America’s public health crisis.
What are the specific nutritional benefits that make seafood healthy? Seafood contains essential omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA, vitamins, minerals and is considered a lean protein. Harvard University researchers have found eating approximately one to two 3 oz. servings of fish a week—salmon, herring, mackerel, anchovies, or sardines as examples—reduce the risk of dying from heart disease by 36 percent.
What is SNP’s advice for eating sustainable seafood? Which seafood sustainability guide do you recommend? The Seafood Nutrition Partnership is committed to the waters that provide the seafood we eat and our work is mindful of how to ensure seafood is available for future generations to come.
We are proud to have NOAA/FishWatch.gov as a partner. FishWatch.gov provides easy-to-understand facts about the science and management behind U.S. seafood and tips on how to make educated seafood choices. Helping everyone—from chefs to consumers—understand sustainable seafood is important to SNP.
The majority of US groceries and retailers have sustainability practices in place. Always buy seafood from a reputable market where the employees are able to answer your questions. They should be able to tell you where the fish is from and when it came into the store.
Do you recommend wild or farmed seafood? There are good wild and farmed seafood options. While SNP does not recommend a particular seafood guide, our partner, FishWatch.gov, has good information and resources for consumers on their Web site.
Is it true a majority (80-90%) of our seafood comes from overseas? Who is monitoring the safety of this seafood? Yes, a majority of seafood does come from overseas sources. The top 10 species of seafood that make up 90 percent of what Americans consume have fisheries management programs in place, including programs managed by NOAA for US-sourced seafood and the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC), International Seafood Sustainability Foundation (ISSF), Global Aquaculture Alliance – Best Aquaculture Practices (GAA-BAP), Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC), and Global Salmon Initiative (GSI) for internationally-sourced seafood.
Both domestic and imported seafood are regulated by the FDA’s HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point) system. The Centers for Disease Control reports that only 0.14 of reported illnesses from food are attributable to imported seafood.
How do you know where the seafood comes from? Seafood is required by U.S. law to be labeled at the grocery store and food service providers for its country of origin and production (e.g., farmed or wild). Please contact the USDA for questions on labeling: http://www.ams.usda.gov/AMSv1.0/cool
What do you say to those who worry about toxins, e.g., mercury? A recent joint study by the World Health Organization (WHO) and FAO found the health benefits of eating seafood outweigh the risks.
Furthermore, the top 10 species of seafood Americans eat represent ninety percent of the seafood consumed in the US and are all low in mercury.
Is there a top fish SNP recommends that will provide me with the best health benefit? Many have asked if there is a “best” fish to eat. The Seafood Nutrition Partnership aims to educate Americans about the nutritional benefits of seafood as a whole, not any one particular species.
The U.S. Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend eating about 8 ounces per week of a variety of seafood for optimum health.
We are a 501(c)3 nonprofit whose mission is to inspire a healthier America through partnerships that raise awareness about the essential nutritional benefits of eating seafood.