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Superquinn's sale of Vietnamese catfish criticised

A Green Party senator has questioned the sale of Vietnamese pangasius fish in Superquinn stores

Image: Alpha via Flickr

IRISH SUPERMARKET CHAIN Superquinn has been slammed for selling Vietnamese catfish.

In today’s Irish Daily Mirror, Green Party Senator Niall O’Brolchain described it as a “ridiculous situation” as under the EU common fisheries policy, Ireland “has to allow its own waters to be used by fishermen from outside the country while we import fish from as far off as Vietnam”.

He added it “doesn’t make any sense economically or environmentally”.

The fish, which are Vietnamese pangasius, come from 9,500km away, leading to a large carbon footprint. But their low price – as little as €1 a fillet – makes them popular with thrifty shoppers.

The fish are sometimes marketed under the name ‘river cobbler’. Pangasius are sold to more than 130 countries globally, mainly in the form of white fillets.

The World Wildlife Fund says that there can be issues around the sale of the fish as “farms are sometimes constructed and/or operated outside the legal framework for addressing environmental, social and food safety issues” and that “fishmeal, fish oil and trash-fish as pangasius feed is resulting in depletion of food sources that other fish rely on”.

However, in a statement to the Irish Daily Mirror, Superquinn said its pangasius stocks have been ethically sourced and prepared and that the plant that supplies to Superquinn has been inspected to ensure that all measures are taken to ensure food safety.

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