Episode 13: Endless Shrimp

Shrimp is the most popular seafood in the U.S., with consumption going up every year, currently at about 5 pounds of shrimp per person per year. Part of its appeal is its neutral taste and its rock bottom price. But underneath the endless all you can eat buffets, and inside the bags of frozen peeled and cooked shrimp is a complicated and unsavory story. The shrimp most people are eating has major environmental problems as well as humanitarian ones. Is anything being done to stop this? Are there any domestic and/or better options? Is the only answer for a concerned eater to give up shrimp entirely?

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“One of the things that the industry asks then is “If we are being held to these [standards], why is it that we compete in a marketplace where the goods that are being imported don't have those in place?’”

Nathan Rickard

Legal Counsel for the Southern Shrimp Alliance

Episode Guests:

Urvashi Rangan

Dr. Rangan is the Chief Science Advisor for FoodPrint, and a toxicologist and public health scientist with 20 years of experience studying the food system. She is a co-chair of the Funders for Regenerative Agriculture and for many years she worked at Consumer Reports, heading up their Food Safety and Sustainability Center.

Nathan Rickard

Nathan is a partner at the law firm of Picard Kentz & Rowe LLP and trade counsel to the Southern Shrimp Alliance.

John Williams

John is a former shrimp fisherman and the Executive Director for the Southern Shrimp Alliance.

Lee Van Der Voo

Lee is an award-winning investigative and environmental journalist and the investigations editor at Civil Eats. She is the author of the book “The Fish Market.”

Andrea Reusing

Andrea is an American chef, best known for her restaurant Lantern in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. In 2011, she won the Best Chef Southeast award from the James Beard Foundation Awards.

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Top photo by Y. Papadimitriou/Adobe Stock.