The Federal Agency for Fishery has warned that this year Russians may be left without saury and squid.
These inhabitants of the sea did not enter the Russian economic zone, and now the entire catch will go to foreign fishermen.
Saury is a commercial fish that is caught in the Pacific Ocean and is most often sold in ready-made canned food. This cheap but nutritious fish has always been available to even the poorest buyer, for which it was valued much more than cod and salmon. This year there will be less saury on the shelves – this fish did not enter the waters where Russian sailors can fish. According to the Federal Agency for Fishery, squids also made a similar demarche, which also circled our territory. Now Chinese, Taiwanese, South Korean and Japanese fishermen are engaged in their production.
“Russian vessels have not started fishing for saury, and this year we can hardly expect saury to enter the Russian economic zone. In open waters, saury fishing is carried out by the fleets of China, Taiwan, South Korea and Japan,” the agency said in a press release.
Scientists argue that the study of the distribution and movement of marine fish has long been a whole science. Understanding how they move makes it possible to ensure a full catch. But today, experts have not been able to say exactly what made saury and squid ignore the Russians.
Experts name two factors influencing the behavior of the abodes of the seas and oceans – water temperature and food. As a prerequisite for forecasting, water temperature is particularly convenient: it can be measured quickly and accurately, the result is easy to compare with data from previous years and with the long-term average. It is known that saury is especially sensitive to temperature: when it is lowered, this fish chooses a coastal path. In warm years, she swims through the open sea. Salinity, oxygen content, and the quality of food for the fish must also be taken into account to predict the movement of fish. Which of these many factors has become critical today is still unknown.
However, this is not the first time saury has become the heroine of public scandals. Not so long ago, the Association of Fishery Enterprises of Primorye called on the Ministry of Industry and Trade to intervene in the situation with the growth of counterfeit canned fish. It turned out that counterfeit products are being sold on the counters of the country. According to the association’s experts, since 2020, the number of cases of substitution of saury in canned food for cheaper sardines and herring has increased. In 2021, the wholesale cost of raw materials for a can of saury was 65 rubles, sardines – 16 rubles, so the benefits of such a deception are obvious.
Theoretically, it is not difficult to track the moment when instead of saury in canned food there is a herring. In Russia, there is an automated information system “Mercury”, which is designed to certify and track the movement of any fish caught, control the production of raw materials and the production of the final product. That is, it is Mercury that is intended to see the moment of fraud. But how then did it happen that a large number of fakes were delivered to store shelves?
Rosrybolovstvo experts explained to journalists that only employees of Rospotrebnadzor can seize counterfeit canned food. They check the product based on sight, taste and smell. However, experts cannot distinguish one fish from another by taste, and there are no funds in the budget for the modernization of laboratories, where the department could determine the quality of the product using chemical analysis.
Meanwhile, specialists from the Federal Agency for Fishery were quick to note that there is no need to fear the complete disappearance of saury from the retail shelves. Probably, this fish will become less and the price of it will increase slightly, but for seafood lovers it will remain quite affordable. But the catch of mackerel and herring Ivasi this year turned out to be quite worthy – the total catch of these two fish exceeded last year’s figure by 0.5%. The bulk of the fish caught is Iwashi. It is caught in the area of the Southern Kuriles, and so far the fishing forecast says that the herring remains with the Russians and is not going to announce sanctions to our country.
Photo: AFP/EAST NEWS