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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
As I read the fish advisory guide I se there is "NO CONSUMPTION" on almost all sizes of whitefish, and lake trout comming from the Lake Michigan waters. I also know for a fact that these fish that have been deemed "NO CONSUMPTION" are also netted and sold by the commercial fisheries to many of our local restaurants. I almost feel cheated that I was not given the same warning when looking at the menus of these establishments. Don't you think this is something the public should be aware of? Haven't the restaurants knowingly put my health at risk, and even more for my pregnant wife?:mad: Why should we accept this? Why don't we insist that the same warnings that we as sportsmen are given, don't find their way to the final consumer of the commercial fishing via the restaurants? I would think the fish warnings should follow the product wherever the fish ends up. Who's to stop us from demanding the truth be known about the quality of their harvest? Perhaps this will in turn curtail the harvest due to demand moving to safer waters?

something I've been pondering, and I'd really like to hear some thoughts.
 

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You are exactly right.

The problem is, this is a federal matter, and they see no need to change it.

There is a guy on these boards, lkmichfish (sp?), that it educated on this. Hopefully he will post.
 

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We had the guy(wish I could remember his name) that was part of publishing the fish consumption advisory and he basically explained that the FDA's guidelines for food sold in stores are way less stringent than those used to determin the comsumable levels for the advisory guide. It's not that anyones "lying", its two completely different groups using two completely different sets of standards.

I will say that I very rarely order fish when I go out, or purchase it in the stores..
 

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We need to keep this thread in "safe territory". References to Native American commercial fishing can cause this thread to be closed, or deleted. Please keep any comments strictly on the toxins in Great Lakes fish and the possible health hazards of eating these fish. If the commercial fishing issue (some of which is conducted by non-natives in non-treaty waters) is to be discussed we need to keep any Native American references out of this.

Having said that, you are correct. Mike and Jason are also correct. I have been interested in using the toxin issue to limit, or end, commercial fishing in the Great Lakes for several years. I have been working alone, yet I have my State Senator's administrative assistant's attention and he has had several discussions with my Senator to try to work on legislation in this matter. My interest has been to do exactly what you are interested in doing, Mallard; provide information to the consumer, at the point of sale, about the contamination of Great Lakes fish sold to the public. The Michigan Department of Community Heath and the Department of Environmental Quality consider most of the Great Lakes fish sold to consumers too high in PCB and/or Dioxin and/or Chlordane. This is especially true for our children and women who expect to have children. I believe, as you believe, that selling these fish without providing the consumer with this information is bordering on a criminal act. The tough part about this is what Jason mentioned. The FDA has lower standards than the MDCH and DEQ. This allows these fish to be exported from Michigan. The next hurdle is the Michigan Department of Agriculture. They are responsible for ensuring that foods grown, harvested, raised... in the State of Michigan and sold in the State of Michigan are safe for human consumption. Unfortunately, the MDA follows the FDA guidelines. So, we are left with our two state agencies that believe that these fish are not safe to eat as our only allies.

We have warning labels on beer cans, cigarettes, household products, tools, cars, toys... Warning labels should be available at restaurants, grocery stores, smokehouses... anywhere that these fish are sold! The consumers in the State of Michigan should be given an educated choice as to whether they want their family to consume these fish. The EPA and FDA have issued warnings on several oceanic fish species, due to the high Mercury content in them. As fishermen/women, we are made aware of the state fish health advisory. Why shouldn't the general public be given the same information about the same fish? We have the choice to eat these fish, or toss them back. The consumer should be able to choose to avoid these fish, or not, given the same information. It is to this end that I have tried to get something done. I have followed several paths which have leaded me to a dead end. I'm not giving up, but it has taken time to learn what doesn't work. The first time that I brought this topic to this board was a couple of years ago. I got more ridicule than support, so don't be surprised if this thread goes sour. Get ready for the guys that say that the studies are a bunch of BS. I still believe that something can and will be done.

Mark
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Original post has been edited so that this thread will survive. I would love to get involved in this issue, so please feel free to email me with anything I may be able to do to support any efforts concerning the topic at hand.
 

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Bingo. More people are taking note of this. The underlying problem is the disparity between EPA and FDA standards. When the EPA lowered the PCB threshold several years back, they forced the states to comply by threatening to withhold Pittman/Robertson and Dingall/Johnson funds. Of the Great Lake states, only MI resisted, for a while. Thus, the EPA action threshold is 0.2 ppm, while the FDA maintains a 2.0 ppm.

Also something to think about. How often and under what circumstances does the FDA check PCB levels in commerical fish?

If you are looking for more underlying information about this, contact Dan Thomas at Great Lakes SportFishing Council. He would be a good source on this issue.
 

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Well I was wantin to post something here about commercial fishing that I have noticed.It sorta off the topic but anyways Im wondering what gives the canadians rights to have lake erie boats to come up and commercial net fish from Lake Hurons waters?They do this during the winter months and join the fleet from Point Edward across from Port Huron.Also I noticed their boats coming in the St Clair river from the American side yesterday.Im sure on this they dont have rights to take fish on the american side of Lake Huron.:mad:
 

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fishlkmich,

You said you had the voice of your senator... Are you talking at the state level or our 2 in DC?
 

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you are not alone, the michigan salmon and steelhead fishermens association has been lobbying for yrs to get these consumption advisories out to the general public and customers of these comercial fish harvesters. Keep up the fight,it is one of the few ways we can work to slow down the spread of comercial fishing to other areas that are now protected.

Maybe a couple dozen lawsuites against some suppliers about neglegeance to inform some mothers or young children about the dangers.
 
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