Environment Tasmania has coordinated independent testing of Tasmanian farmed salmon and found concerning results. We (assisted by a member of the public) bought 2 fillets from each Tasmanian farmed salmon producer from supermarkets in Melbourne, and sent them off to be analysed in an independant, NATA accredited lab, Eurofins Australia. Different brands showed different fat levels - and all of them were higher in total fats than what’s claimed in Australia, or indeed any fat levels of farmed salmon we could find from around the world.
One Tassal fillet had total fat levels that are 73% higher than what they publish, (28g) and saturated fat 83% higher than declared (5.68g)
For reference, wild Atlantic salmon are reported to have 6.3g total fat and 1g saturated fat per 100g.
Environment Tasmania's Lead marine campaigner Jilly Middleton is calling for Food Standards Australia and New Zealand to further investigate and if necessary update their health recommendations regarding Tasmanian farmed salmon.
Sydney University's professor of Nutrition and Cardiometabolic Health, Michael Skilton commented;
“There are two aspects that concern me about these test results. Firstly, the increase in overall fat in the salmon will have a marked effect on total calorie intake, which is a key driver of obesity. Secondly, the amount of saturated fat is also higher than previously reported. Saturated fat is the strongest dietary driver of high blood cholesterol and is a major risk factor for heart disease. While the “healthy” omega-3 fats are also increased, omega-3 fats don’t offset these negative effects of saturated fat.”
We found trans fats that are not naturally found in seafood - It’s a red flag, another sign that farmed salmon is very different nutritionally to it’s much healthier wild cousin. We would suggest that consumers who are buying salmon for their health’s sake monitor this issue to see what further investigations find.
Given how carefully the producers monitor and control the levels of omega 3 fatty acids in the salmon meat, it’s very hard to believe these results would be a surprise to the salmon companies, or the feed industry.
|Results||Total Fats||Saturated fats||MUFAs||PUFAs||Trans fats|
Units are grams per 100 grams of fresh salmon, this is equivalent to % by weight.
Tassal claim 16.1% total fat and 3.1% saturated fat.
The Mynetdiary figure for Petuna is 12% total fat, 3% saturated fat.
The Mynetdiary figure for Huon is 18% total fat, 3.5% saturated fat.
Lead marine campaigner