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1. Contamination is widespread
Farm raised shrimp can contain chemical residues from cleaning agents, pathogens like Salmonella and E. coli and other contaminants like mouse and rat hair. A major part of the problem is farmed shrimp which, like farmed fish, tends to be far more contaminated than its wild-caught counterparts. Aquatic farms of all kinds also pose grave dangers to ecological systems.
2. Increase risk of breast cancer and reduce sperm counts
4-hexylresorcinol, a preservative used to prevent discoloration in shrimp and other shellfish, acts as a xenoestrogens and can increase the risk of breast cancer in women and reduce sperm counts in men. Sciences showed that 260 mg/kg of 4-hexylresorcinol was lethal to all cats used in the study, and they also found it was carcinogenic in both the 13-week and two-year long studies. It also caused a high incidence of nephropathy (an autoimmune disease that affects your kidneys) in mice.
Blue Shrimp Syndrome is common in farm raised shrimp. BSS is where shrimp lack natural astaxanthin and to counter that farmers give their shrimp synthetic astaxanthin. Synthetic antaxanthin is made from petrochemicals that are not approved for human consumption!
3. Shrimp-packing plants are filthy
In a November 2012 issue of Bloomberg magazine4 revealed some truly disgusting facts about the conditions in which shrimp are packaged and shipped. At one particular facility in Vietnam, the magazine’s reporters found processing-plant floors littered with garbage, flies buzzing around, and shrimp that wasn’t being stored at proper temperatures.The shrimp itself was packed in ice made from local tap water, which public health authorities warned should be boiled before using due to microbial contamination, potentially exposing the shrimp (and eaters) to more bacterial contamination. According to Bloomberg, FDA inspectors have rejected 1,380 loads of seafood from Vietnam since 2007 for filth and salmonella, including 81 from the plant the reporters visited.”
4. Nitrofuranzone and chloramphenical is prevalant
This drug can promote overgrowth of fungi, and has been found to cause breast cancer in female rats when given orally in high doses. Disturbingly, the shrimp were found to contain levels 28 and 29 times higher than allowable limits set by the FDA. The antibiotic chloramphenical was also detected in some shrimp samples. Chloramephenical is banned in food production in the US due to potentially severe side effects, including aplastic anemia and leukemia. Shrimp may also be contaminated with penicillin, which can trigger allergic reactions in susceptible individuals who might never suspect shrimp as a potential source.
5. Farm raising shrimp contribute to climate change
Is that possible? Yes! When farmed in non-native waters, shrimp are raised in underwater pens built along the coastlines, where native mangrove forests are frequently sacrificed to make room for them. Mangroves serve many important functions in the environment, including providing a buffer against hurricanes and flooding, absorbing carbon dioxide (mangroves absorb more carbon dioxide than rainforests), and serve as the native habitat for a variety of fish.
Fish farms are the aquatic version of a confined animal feeding operation (CAFO), which is why I simply cannot recommend farmed seafood of any kind. Furthermore, the diet they are fed greatly reduces all the great nutritional benefit natural wild caught shrimp provide.