With many seafood products, it’s important to inspire confidence in consumers. There can be issues with mercury, PCBs, and bacteria that can be harmful to humans when consumed. The NOAA fisheries offer inspection services to ensure that the seafood products companies are selling are fit for human consumption.
The organization does this by looking for compliance on multiple points. The list includes:
– Ensuring that food safety regulation has been followed to keep consumers safe.
– Assuring the quality of the seafood so that it’s fit for consumption.
– Grade and certify products to give consumers transparency.
– Check facilities and processes for regulation compliance.
A good example of what the NOAA does to provide transparency is to ensure food safety. The way that oysters are tested provides insight into the level of quality control and testing that the organization adheres to. Oysters may have a bacteria called vibrio parahaemolyticus. This is what leads to consumers getting food poisoning after eating oysters contaminated with this type of bacteria.
Testing for this virus is an example of what helps the NOAA find fisheries that may have a problem within their population. Companies get their products inspected by the NOAA for a fee. If their products meet the NOAA’s regulations and quality evaluation, they will be able to use the NOAA label for their seafood product.
The NOAA label will help companies win over more customers and inspire trust from existing customers. It’s a label that is very specific to seafood that is being sold in the United States.