Fish Investigation

Fish Investigation

Americans have an insatiable appetite for fresh fish. But do you always get what you pay for?

In 2007, INSIDE EDITION went to 10 fish markets and paid as much as $30 a pound for wild salmon.

Many people pay more for wild salmon because they believe it's healthier and tastes better than farmed salmon, which costs about half as much. But how can you tell if you're really getting wild salmon?  

Most people can't, unless they do what we did and get the fish tested. Incredibly, we found four out of the 10 pieces that were supposed to be wild actually came from a fish farm.

So how could this happen? INSIDE EDITION's Matt Meagher went back to the markets to find out.

At a seafood market in New York City, where we paid $20 a pound for the wild salmon, the employee that sold us the salmon blamed the supplier.


"It's twice as much as farm raised salmon. So are you taking advantage of the consumer?" asks INSIDE EDITION's Matt Meagher.

"No, definitely not, if I'm told it's wild I'm assuming it's wild. If it's tagged I'm assuming that it's a wild salmon," said the employee.

"So somebody sold it to you and tagged it as wild salmon?" asks Meagher.

"Yes," he said.

INSIDE EDITION found some sushi restaurants also sell fish that is not what it is supposed to be.

Japanese red snapper is a delicacy and a prized fish among sushi lovers. It can cost restaurants as much as $30 a pound.

INSIDE EDITION bought red snapper at 14 different sushi restaurants in 2007, and had samples of the DNA analyzed.


Incredibly, the test results showed that nine of the 14 restaurants we visited actually served tilapia, a cheap fish that can cost as little as $2-3 a pound.

When we returned to one of the sushi restaurants, the manager protested and brought down a package she says she was told was red snapper.

"We sell this one, that's not tilapia," she said.

"It says 'tilapia filet' right there," pointed out Matt Meagher. "That's not red snapper, this is a very cheap inexpensive fish and red snapper is a very expensive fish."

"They tell me this is red snapper," said the manager. She then said she would call the company to check.