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Rescooped by Justin Hannahs from The Cold War!

Lesson 9 Cuban Missile Crisis 1960 1964

Lesson 9 Cuban Missile Crisis 1960 1964 | Sushi - 20% project |
Lesson 9 Cuban Missile Crisis 1960 1964 - authorSTREAM Presentation

Via Orana School
Orana School's curator insight, March 23, 2015 4:10 AM

A PowerPoint on the Cuban Missile Crisis.

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McCarthyism []

McCarthyism [] | Sushi - 20% project |

Via Orana School
Orana School's curator insight, March 24, 2015 8:39 PM

This site includes primary sources.  

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The Atomic Bomb: Hiroshima and Nagasaki |

The Atomic Bomb: Hiroshima and Nagasaki | | Sushi - 20% project |

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Secondary Source Three: Normandy Invasion, June 1944

Secondary Source Three: Normandy Invasion, June 1944 | Sushi - 20% project |
D-Day, a historical overview and special image selection, photographs, on the June 1944 invasion of Normandy, provides links to additional views, information, on this subject, US Navy Normandy, U.S. Navy.

Via Ashanae Pickett
Ashanae Pickett's curator insight, March 10, 2014 9:53 AM

I learned that on June 6, 1944 the western allies landed in northern france opening the long- awaited second front against Adolf Hitler's Germany. They been fighting in Mainland Italy for some nine months. The Normandy Invasion was setting the stage to drive the Germans from france and ultimately destroy the National Socialist regime. Commanded by U.S. Army General Dwight D. Eisenhower the Normandy assaulted Phase code- named Neptune( the entire operation was overlord). I also learned that German counterattacks were thwarted the allies poured men and material into france. And that was the end of the war.

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Primary Source #3: D-Day - Invasion of Normandy - Operation Overlord Documents and Photos

Primary Source #3: D-Day - Invasion of Normandy - Operation Overlord Documents and Photos | Sushi - 20% project |

Via Ashanae Pickett
Ashanae Pickett's curator insight, March 10, 2014 1:29 PM

In this section i learned that the commander which is General Dwight D. Eisenhower was attacked. And the D-Day operation for june 6, 1944 had brought together land, and air. The beaches were given code names such as UTAH. There were 9 battleships. 23 cruisers. And 104 destroyers. 71 large landing craft of various descriptions as well as troop transports. I honestly think that the numbers were really uneven at everything. Like why did one war only have a certain number of things. Because thats really unfair to be honest. But this is my summary for this website.

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THAILAND: Thai fisheries under pressure

THAILAND: Thai fisheries under pressure | Sushi - 20% project |

David Hayes reports on the challenges that Thai fisheries are currently facing.


Thailand’s fisheries industry is facing challenging times as an outbreak of Early Mortality Syndrome (EMS) on the Kingdom’s eastern seaboard has badly hit farmed shrimp production during the past year, creating a global shortage that has driven up shrimp prices in major markets, including the United States and Europe.


The EMS epidemic is not the Thai fishing industry’s only problem. Accusations by various international organisations over the alleged use of forced labour and child workers by some fishing boats and fishery processing plant operators have prompted the Department of Fisheries and other concerned government departments to set up a Good Labour Practices programme in cooperation with the International Labour Organisation (ILO) to ensure fishing and fishery processing businesses comply with Thai labour laws and relevant ILO conventions.


“Aquaculture has gone down this past year, maybe by 30% or more because of an EMS outbreak which began in eastern Thailand. We are trying to find out the cause of the problem and recover output,” commented Dr Waraporn Prompoj, Senior Expert on International Fisheries Affairs in the Department of Fisheries.


“Production has started to improve again in the last few months as we have started to import bio-secure brood stock from Hawaii. The Department of Fisheries sent a mission to Hawaii to visit facilities there and to bring brood stock back to Thailand.”



Research continues into how EMS entered Thailand after an earlier EMS outbreak in Vietnam in 2012. Shrimp farmers report that EMS outbreaks typically occur within one month of a new shrimp pond being inhabited.

Various causes have been suggested including that the bacteria are carried in the gut of seaworms imported from China, where EMS started in 2009, which are fed to farmed shrimp parent stock.


Another suggestion is that the bacteria causing EMS may have entered the ocean current.


Thailand is the world’s largest supplier of shrimp. According to Somsak Paneetatyasai, President of the Thai Shrimp Association, the Kingdom’s total shrimp exports in 2013 are expected to be about 200,000 tons, worth around US$2.15 billion, when figures are confirmed for the year, representing a sharp drop in tonnage and value compared with shrimp exports of 350,000 tons worth $3.39 billion in 2012.


Somsak was recently quoted in the Bangkok Post as saying that Thailand still remained the world’s leading supplier of shrimp in 2013, in spite of the sharp fall in export shipments.


The United States is the Kingdom’s largest shrimp export market, though Indian shrimp exporters have overtaken Thai exporters as the US’s major shrimp suppliers since Thailand’s EMS outbreak occurred, Somsak said.

While research into EMS continues, the Fisheries Department is working with shrimp farmers to try and eradicate the disease.


“We have closed prawn farms in contaminated areas. We have asked for cooperation from prawn farmers for this,” Dr Waraporn said. “Now the situation is better as we are cleaning up prawn farms and we will reintroduce brood stock there.


“We are applying to the government for a 200 million baht (US$6.2m) brood stock grant. We are not sure how long the brood stock programme will last.”



In addition to pushing up the price of shrimp in the domestic market and in major Thai shrimp importing countries, the shrimp shortage resulting from the EMS outbreak has badly affected local seafood processing plants which have been unable to find sufficient raw material to process for overseas clients.


“We have a lack of material for shrimp processing. That’s why we are trying to bring the production volume back to the previous level,” Dr Waraporn said. “We used to export around 600,000 tonnes of shrimp a year in the past but that volume has now reduced.”


According to the Fisheries Department, Thailand exported fish and fishery products worth US$7.3 billion in 2011. Major export markets are the United States, which took 53% of Thai shrimp and 22% tuna exports by value that year, Japan, the European Union and Canada.


Processed tuna, mostly canned tuna and tuna loins, is Thailand’s other major fishery export apart from shrimp with around 560,000 tons exported in 2012, according to government figures, compared with over 600,000 tons the previous year.


Unlike shrimp, which are locally farmed, Thailand’s fishing fleet catches only a small share of the tuna that is processed for export.


The volume of tuna and other fish species caught in Thai waters has fallen sharply during the past two decades due to overfishing. As a result, more than one million tons of fishery products are imported frozen each year for export processing, much of it tuna for canning.


Thailand’s fisheries production in 2012 is estimated at about 3 million tons, not including distant waters fisheries. Aquaculture is believed to have accounted for almost half of total production. Mariculture represented over half of the total aquaculture output due to the large share of shrimp production.



Meanwhile, the Fisheries Department is one of several government departments and ministries involved in implementing a number of initiatives that are intended to promote improved labour standards and working conditions in Thailand’s fishing industry.


Under implementation in cooperation with various public organisations, private agencies and NGOs, the Fisheries Department’s Good Labour Practice action plan is targeting the fishing, shrimp farming and fisheries processing sectors to ensure fishing and fishery processing businesses comply with Thai labour laws and relevant ILO conventions, following allegations by international organisations of forced labour and child workers along with other unlawful practices being used in Thailand’s fishing industry.


On 2 September 2013, the International Labour Organisation (ILO) announced that a new study based on 598 interviews with people working in the Thai fisheries sector had discovered a number of shortfalls in the Kingdom’s fishing industry in relation to national and international labour standards.


The study noted that 32 respondents (5.4%) had stated they were deceived or coerced into work in fishing, with the largest proportion working on distant waters fishing vessels.


The study found that 17% of those surveyed said they were working against their will and unable to leave because of the threat of financial penalties or for other reasons including the threat of violence or denunciation to the authorities.


In addition the study revealed 33 children under the age of 18 working on fishing vessels, of which seven were aged under 15 years old.


The ILO report stated that many of the problems faced by fishermen are compounded by a lack of employment contracts and that 94% of those surveyed did not have a written contract. As a result, working hours and conditions, the method of calculating pay, and the frequency of pay and deductions were not clearly defined.


Other factors contributing to fishermen’s problems include the irregular status of migrant fishermen, limited monitoring by Thailand’s labour inspectorate and other relevant bodies, and the lack of any representative workers’ group.



To tackle these problems, the Thai government has set up a number of Labour Coordination Centres (LCCs) specifically for the fishing industry to enable fishermen, shrimp farm workers and fishery processing plant workers to be registered and trained.


The government initiative, which is being implemented by the Fisheries Department and Department of Labour with technical support from the ILO and in cooperation with employers, is intended to ensure greater protection for fishing industry workers in both recruitment and employment.


Other initiatives underway include measures to improve labour inspection, occupational safety and health, and to develop a code of conduct and a good labour practices training programme for fishing vessel owners and captains.


“We have set up seven LCC centres to serve 32 coastal provinces. Fishing companies bring their workers to get registered, so those people who are illegal workers are legalised and then treated properly,” Dr Waraporn explained. “Before they were unseen, now they are seen.


“We have a database to record them in our system under the Department of Labour. The Department of Fisheries will issue a license to fishing companies with registered fishermen.


“We have joined hands with other departments for the labour inspection: the Labour Department is in charge of the labour inspection; the Marine Department does fishing vessel registrations and Fisheries Department does the fishing licenses every year.”


Because the fisheries sector is labour intensive by its nature, the industry provides a large number of job opportunities to Thai workers along with large numbers of migrant workers, many of whom are from neighbouring Myanmar, Laos and Cambodia.


The government estimates that the fisheries sector generates jobs for more than one million workers in fishing, shrimp farming, fishery processing and other related sectors.


One reason for the large number of foreign fishermen working on Thai vessels is that many Thai fishermen left the industry after Typhoon Gay caused many deaths among Thai fishing crews in 1992.


Work continues to ensure that all workers in the fishing industry are properly registered with companies importing seafood from Thailand and government agencies in major importing countries following progress and developments with interest.


“The reaction from foreign importers is that they are eager to know what we are doing,” “Dr Waraporn said. “Walmart and Costco of the United States have planned to do a social audit. Fisheries Department officials have visited them and explained to them about labour practices here.”



Fisheries Department and Labour Department officials are contacting fishing companies and fishing boat owners to inform them of the registration programme and encourage them to register all their fishermen and other workers.


Estimates of fishermen numbers working on Thai fishing boats range from 150,000 to 200,000 workers. Actual numbers will be known as registration progresses.


“The Fisheries Department is trying to engage coastal fishing groups to register their workers at LCC and Labour Department offices,” Dr Waraporn said. “Also, we encourage Thai vessels fishing in Myanmar’s waters to register their staff – about 100 vessels employing around 3,000 fishermen, mostly from Myanmar, already have joined the programme.”


Another group the Fisheries Department, working with the Department of Special Investigation under the Ministry of Justice and the Department of Employment, has persuaded to cooperate are the Samaesan fishermen’s group based in Chonburi on the eastern seaboard.


The group, which operate 192 fishing boats employing about 2,000 fishermen, recently agreed to bring its illegal workers from Myanmar and Cambodia to register at the local LCC centre and with the Labour Department.


“We have been working hard to improve the labour situation; we have had a few headaches,” Dr Waraporn said. “Although the Fisheries Department is not in charge of fisheries labour, this is important to the fishing industry so we have to work with fishing groups and other government departments to solve this situation.


“Fishery importers in Europe also have learned about this. The EEC Commission has asked us about the situation. We have sent a full report to the Commission in November and explained what we have done.

“Also, in May 2014 at the European seafood show we will hold a seminar to explain what we are doing.”


Action plan

Meanwhile, the Fisheries Department in conjunction with the Labour Department, and with technical support from the ILO, is continuing to implement its Ten Point fisheries sector action plan, that is intended to promote improved labour standards and working conditions in Thailand’s fishing industry.


The action plan includes development of Good Labour Practices (GLP) programme targeting the fishing, shrimp farming and fisheries processing sectors following original allegations by international organisations of forced labour and child workers along with other unlawful practices being used in Thailand’s fishing industry.


Other action plan targets involve the development of recommendations for a Hazardous Work List for the shrimp and seafood industry to protect young workers; the surveying and registration of primary processing shrimp and seafood enterprises; and development of a Safety and Health Training Manual for the commercial fishing industry.


The development of a system for registration and documentation of fishing vessels and fishing crews for efficient inspection, is included in the action plan; also, development of a system of fishing vessel, fishing gear and crew inspection; and development of a Vessel Monitoring System to monitor fishing crews’ movements in Thai vessels in international waters.


Development of operational guidelines for Port in - Port out inspection for fishing vessels in international waters is another action plan target; also, development of labour reduction technology for fishing vessels; and setting up LCC centres for the fishing industry which, as noted earlier, already is underway.


“On 16 September 2013, we had 178 stakeholders, namely: 81 primary fishery processing companies, 65 frozen seafood processors and 32 seafood canning companies, who signed a Letter of Intent to commit to Good Labour Practices,” Dr Waraporn said.


“In early 2014 we plan to be training fishing companies to apply Good Labour Practices to the fishing industry. The fishery processing industry has done it first.”


Further backing to the Good Labour Practices Programme was given in November when eight industrial associations involved in Thailand’s fishing industry signed a MoU to encourage sustainable fishing to protect the Kingdom’s fishery sector.


Under the MoU, all stakeholders commit to focus on fishery production using sustainable, non-harmful fishing methods, to use legal labour, and to meet required food safety standards.


Those signing the MoU were: the National Fisheries Association of Thailand, the Overseas Fisheries Association, Thai Fishmeal Producers Association, Thai Feed Mill Association, Thai Frozen Foods Association, Thai Shrimp Association, Thai Tuna Industry Association and Thai Food Processors’ Association.


“We cannot afford to lose this fishing industry,” Dr Waraporn said. “The eight associations joining shows the importance of this.”


World Fishing & Aquaculture

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#4 trust your fishmonger


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UNITED STATES: Seafood Sleuthing Reveals Pervasive Fish Fraud In New York City

UNITED STATES: Seafood Sleuthing Reveals Pervasive Fish Fraud In New York City | Sushi - 20% project |

Red snapper, wild salmon, and other fish sold in some outlets were other, cheaper species, according to DNA tests done by an ocean conservation group.

If you buy fish in New York City, particularly from a small market or restaurant, there's a pretty good chance it won't be the fish it claims to be.

An ocean conservation group announced today that three in five retail outlets it visited, including 100 percent of sushi restaurants, were selling mislabeled fish. The report is just the latest in a string of investigations revealing that seafood mislabeling is commonplace.

The researchers, from the group Oceana, collected 142 fish samples earlier this year from 81 retail outlets, including large grocery stores, corner bodegas, high-end restaurants, and sushi bars. They analyzed the samples using DNA barcoding, and found that 39 percent of the fish were labeled as other species.

Farm-raised Atlantic salmon had been substituted for wild-caught salmon, they found. Ocean perch, tilapia, and goldbanded jobfish were sold as red snapper. Fish labeled "white tuna" was escolar, which can cause acute gastrointestinal problems. And one serving of halibut was really tilefish, a species with so much mercury that the Food and Drug Administration has placed it on the do-not-eat list for pregnant women and young children.

The study didn't address who exactly is responsible for the mislabeling — whether at the supplier or the retail level. "That's for the enforcers," notes Kimberly Warner, a senior scientist at Oceana.

Last year the Boston Globe reported that 48 percent of fish in Massachusetts were mislabeled, similar to findings in Los Angeles (55 percent) and Miami (31 percent). A follow-up from the Globe published earlier this month found that 76 percent of fish in a new survey were mislabeled.

And in 2008, two New York City high school students conducted their own DNA study of four restaurants and 10 grocery stores in Manhattan and found that a quarter of the fish they sampled were mislabeled.

Warner says that traceability — a better system that would make it easier to track seafood from net to plate — would help to eliminate the fraud. "We have a very complex and murky seafood chain with no traceability."

A bill introduced to Congress in July is intended to address seafood fraud. Fish suppliers, restaurants, and stores would have to provide more information to their customers about the seafood they sell. In addition, the bill would require more coordination between the FDA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration — the two government agencies responsible for food and fisheries regulation.

But Gavin Gibbons, a spokesman for the National Fisheries Institute, says that the enforcement of current law is what's really needed. "If there were more enforcement on the ground as opposed to more regulations on the books, we think we'd be seeing less fraud," Gibbons says.

Figuring out the source of a fishy fraud, whether it's a retail outlet or a supplier, Gibbons says, "is really not that hard." With only a DNA test, a menu, and an invoice, an enforcer can see that if the "invoice matches the menu and not the DNA, then you know that the supplier was the source of the fraud."

In the absence of better enforcement, Gibbons suggests that consumers ask their local shop or restaurant if their fish supplier is a member of the Better Seafood Board, an industry group that works to eliminate fish fraud.

The source of mislabeling isn't always greed — sometimes two species look too similar even for fishermen to tell them apart. But when some fish sellers are playing fair and others are getting away with substituting cheaper species for more expensive ones, "it harms a lot of people," Warner notes, "not just the consumer."

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The best sushi that isn’t raw fish

The best sushi that isn’t raw fish | Sushi - 20% project |
Sushi is not raw fish. This is one of the biggest misnomers about Japan and it drives me crazy.

Via Alexandra Verville-Paris
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How To Make Sushi with Visual Guide | Fresh Tastes Blog | PBS Food

How To Make Sushi with Visual Guide | Fresh Tastes Blog | PBS Food | Sushi - 20% project |
Learn how to make sushi with a step-by-step breakdown with these easy instructions for tuna and scallion sushi. Learn how with PBS Food.

Via Frank Kusters
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Great visual resource

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The 21 Best Sushi Spots in America

The 21 Best Sushi Spots in America | Sushi - 20% project |
Pick up your chopsticks, tuck in your napkin, and slurp down our picks for the best sushi spots across America.

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World War II Documentary - long

World War II Document. This shows the gruesome parts of World War II.
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Communism: A 1952 Anti Soviet Propaganda Short Film From The Cold War Era - YouTube

Includes archival footage of Winston Churchill, Andrei Gromyko, V.I. Lenin, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Joseph Stalin, Leon Trotsky, Tsar Nicholas II and moe! "Th...

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Orana School's curator insight, March 24, 2015 8:33 PM

Original source for Cold War propaganda.

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Cold War Museum

Cold War Museum | Sushi - 20% project |

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Orana School's curator insight, March 24, 2015 8:38 PM

A brief article on McCarthy; good starting point.

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The Atomic Bomb and the End of World War II: A Collection of Primary Sources

The Atomic Bomb and the End of World War II: A Collection of Primary Sources | Sushi - 20% project |

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definitely using this!

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Primary Source #1: Invasion of Normandy, June 6, 1944: A Civilian's View

Primary Source #1: Invasion of Normandy, June 6, 1944: A Civilian's View | Sushi - 20% project |
A French woman living on the coast describes the Normandy invasion.

Via Ashanae Pickett
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Awesome to have a civilian insight

Ashanae Pickett's curator insight, March 10, 2014 12:57 PM

I learned what kind of weapons they used to kill people. They used tanks to try and run over people with. And to shoot with. It was a first burst of tracer bullets. They were very red, sweeps the gate and then men begin to crouch down to take cover. I want to know why they are doing this to them. And how many people actually took cover.

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Primary Source #2: Back from the invasion of Normandy

Primary Source #2: Back from the invasion of Normandy | Sushi - 20% project |
1 photographic print. | Photograph shows veterans wounded during the Normandy invasion convalescing at Walter Reed Hospital. Left to right: Pfc. James R. Himes, Pvt. Clarence Osher, Pfc. Lester A. Walter, and Pvt. Lewis E. Morris.

Via Ashanae Pickett
Ashanae Pickett's curator insight, March 10, 2014 10:34 AM

This is a picture of veterans that was wounded. During Normandy invasion at the Walter Reed hospital. Basically I learned that if you go to war there's a 9 out of 10 chance that your going to end up getting hurt of killed. And the people in this picture are still living. They were well token care of and everything. And if you do go to war be prepared to fight for your life and not to give up just because you got wounded. I wonder how many people ended up staying alive after the war was over.

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What is Temaki Sushi?

What is Temaki Sushi? | Sushi - 20% project |

Temaki sushi, also known as hand rolled sushi, is a popular casual Japanese food. The conelike form of temaki incorporates rice, specially prepared seaweed called nori, and a variety of fillings known as neta. While Temaki is rare at formal restaurants, it is popular at casual ones and at home, especially for roll your own sushi parties. Making temaki is easy and fun, and it is often used to introduce Westerners to the taste and experience of sushi.

Temaki starts with a sheet of nori, which is usually cut in half to make it more manageable. The cook scoops a small amount of sushi rice onto the nori and follows with neta of choice before rolling it tightly up into a cone which can be held easily in the hand and dipped into sauces. Traditionally, temaki is eaten by hand, because it would be ungainly with chopsticks, and quickly, because the nori will start to soften and turn rubbery from the ingredients if allowed to sit too long.

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Question #3!

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UNITED ARAB EMIRATES: Supermarkets selling cheap fish labelled as hammour

UNITED ARAB EMIRATES: Supermarkets selling cheap fish labelled as hammour | Sushi - 20% project |

DUBAI - Supermarkets and restaurants across the UAE are breaching food labelling laws by selling cheap fish and labelling it as hammour, municipality officials say.


Outlets also are bulking up frozen fish with ice to boost its weight, the officials said.


“The product has to match the label,” said Bashir Yousef, a Dubai Municipality food-safety expert. “If not, it is illegal because the product name should indicate what is in the food and what it’s all about.”


In June this year, a shopper realised that the kilogram of frozen hammour he bought from a Dubai supermarket was nothing of the sort.


Not only did his fish weigh in at only 500 grams, but the species was Pangasius, a type of catfish imported from Vietnam that costs a fifth of the price of hammour.


On a visit to food outlets in Dubai, J V, a fish expert and manager of a seafood-processing company, found many outlets were flouting the law.


The Fish & Chips Room in Dubai Marina offered“battered hammour” and chips. J V said the fish was the much cheaper Nile perch.


“The fish is in batter so you can’t see much, but once opened you can see its flakes breaking up easily,” he said. “Hammour has stronger flakes.”


After tasting the fish J V said: “This is definitely Nile perch. The colour is supposed to be more pinkish red, whereas this is white.”


The price displayed for 200 grams was Dh38 – too low for hammour.


“There’s no way this is hammour,” J V said. “The price should be higher because what’s displayed here is the price of the raw material hammour.”


Hammour usually costs about Dh50 a kilo in supermarkets, while cheaper species can be as little as Dh10 a kilo.


But the manager of the Fish & Chips Room insisted it was hammour.


“It is actually hammour locally bought,” said Joseph Gerreyn. “It’s labelled hammour when I buy it from my supplier, I’m 100 per cent sure.”


But others admitted to switching species. At the Lebanese restaurant Beiutna, 180 grams of a “hammour fillet” meal with chips cost Dh60.


Again, he said, the fish was not hammour.


“It’s too long to be hammour,” said JV. “The texture is too soft and the colour is too white. It even has a different taste. This is cream dory, which should cost Dh25.”


The manager, Hashem Jaramani, admitted it was cream dory.


“All restaurants do this because you cannot always get hammour on the market,” Mr Jaramani said. “I’ve been doing this for 12 years. If I write cream dory on the menu, Arabic people won’t understand what it is.”


Mr Jaramani offered a refund, but Mr Yousef, of the municipality, said that was not good enough.

“If a customer wants to buy hammour, he will pay premium money for it, so it’s obviously illegal to mislabel it,” he said. “You are cheating the customer if there is any discrepancy in the ingredient list.”


Mr Yousef said consumers who encountered any mislabelling of food should complain to the municipality or the Department of Economic Development.


“Fish usually needs to be verified but if it’s the case, we will take action against the establishment,” he said. “It’s the basic right of the consumer to complain of the very nature of the product and sometimes, people have something that they can’t [discern].”


He said the municipality would fine any food outlet found to be responsible for mislabelling a product.


“But we would have to run further investigations to find out if the violation was intentional or not,” Mr Yousef said.


He said that if the owner was found to be fraudulently selling a product, the outlet could be closed down or the owner could be taken to court.


To complain about food mislabelling, consumers can call the Dubai Municipality on 800900.


Caline Malek



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#4 - where to buy fish


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Column: The future of sushi is fish farming - Lincoln Journal Star

Column: The future of sushi is fish farming - Lincoln Journal Star | Sushi - 20% project |
Jiro Ono, 89, widely considered the world's greatest sushi chef, has some dire news for aficionados of raw fish: The delicacy's best days may be behind us.

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BELGIUM: Too much tuna can be bad for your brain, report warns

BELGIUM: Too much tuna can be bad for your brain, report warns | Sushi - 20% project |

BRUSSELS — Can eating too much sushi reduce your brain power?


Mercury contamination in big fish such as sharks, swordfish and certain types of tuna is on the rise, and smaller traces of the toxic metal may be enough to cause restricted brain development or other health problems for humans who eat them, according to data released Tuesday.


"Levels of exposure that are defined as safe by the official limits, are actually having adverse effects," said Dr. Edward Groth, author of one of two new reports published ahead of a United Nations conference on mercury pollution.


"These are not trivial effects, these are significant effects," Groth, an adviser to the World Health Organization, told journalists in a web conference. "There does appear to be evidence now, fairly persuasive evidence, that adverse effects occur from normal amounts of seafood consumption."

Scientists have warned about the potential dangers of mercury in seafood since the 1950s when mercury-contaminated waste water was dumped in the sea from a factory in Minamata, Japan.


Thousands suffered poisoning, which in extreme cases lead to insanity, deformation and death. Many children whose mothers had eaten contaminated fish were born with severe disabilities.

The mercury levels at Minamata were uniquely high, but since then scientists have sought to discover whether tiny traces of mercury found in seafood across the oceans could have an impact on the health of fish-eating humans.


Although little risk has been detected in most types of fish, the authorities have long warned vulnerable groups, such as pregnant women and small children, to limit their consumption of certain species of big ocean predators.


The European Union recommends pregnant or breastfeeding women not to eat tuna more than twice a week. The US Food and Drug Administration says they should avoid shark, swordfish or king mackerel, although it says some tuna should be included in their diet.


Such guidelines are out of date and stricter rules are needed to avoid the risk that even low levels of mercury could lead to health issues such as impeded brain development in unborn children, according to the new reports which were produced by the Maine-based Biodiversity Research Institute and an international coalition of environmental campaign groups called the Zero Mercury Working Group.


"Recent studies have found adverse effects below exposure levels considered 'safe' just a few years ago," says one report. "Several of these studies clearly show that the consumption of ordinary amounts of fish with higher mercury levels can cause health risks to the developing foetus and children."


The reports call for a new international benchmark for safe mercury consumption, at around one-quarter of the current US recommended dosage. The authors suggest some species with particularly high average mercury levels, like marlin or Pacific bluefin tuna, be left off the menu altogether, while others such as grouper or albacore tuna should be limited to one meal a month.


The fisheries industry frequently counters that mercury reports are scare-mongering by environmentalists and says any risk from mercury is more than outweighed by the health benefits of eating more fish.


According to the US National Fisheries Institute, there has never been a confirmed case of mercury toxicity in the United States through eating commercial seafood. In contrast, it says 84,000 Americans die every year due to a lack of the omega-3 fatty acid commonly found in fish.


The authors of the new report insist they are not seeking to persuade people to stop eating fish.


They agree fish is essential for healthy brain development in young children and the unborn. However they caution consumers to be more picky about which species they put on their plates.


"We need to stress the benefits of eating fish and tell people they should continue to do that," said Groth. "Pregnant women in particular can continue to eat fish, but as the evidence gets stronger that smaller doses of mercury can be harmful, consumers need to be better educated and more aware of which fish to choose."


Over two-thirds of all commercial fish species have low levels of mercury and should be eaten regularly, the reports say. That includes haddock, salmon, cod, sardine, herring and sea bass.


More from GlobalPost: Radioactive sushi fear hits market


The reports were released in preparation for a major event hosted by the UN in Geneva, Switzerland, next month which will attempt to draw up an international treaty to limit the use of mercury and eliminate the growing problem of mercury pollution.


“The level of mercury in the Pacific Ocean is projected to increase by 50 percent by 2050, if current pollution trends continue unabated,” Richard Gutierrez, executive director of Ban Toxics!, a Filipino organization that is part of the Zero Mercury coalition.


“This is a wake-up call for all governments to stem the rising tide of mercury pollution and finalize a strong treaty.”


Scientists warn however that even if the treaty does introduce effective pollution controls, it could still take decades, even centuries, before some parts of the deep ocean will see major reductions in mercury levels.


"If we continue as we have been going with marine pollution, with time this is going to make it more and more difficult to find safe seafood," says Philippe Grandjean, chair of environmental medicine at the University of Southern Denmark and professor at Harvard School of Public Health.


"I think the next generation would like us to do the best we can to clean up after ourselves to make sure that seafood in the longterm is safe to consume and we are not polluting the brains of children in the next generation."


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Rescooped by Justin Hannahs from The Asian Food Gazette.!

Eight Great Tips for Homemade Sushi Rolls: Food + Cooking :

Eight Great Tips for Homemade Sushi Rolls: Food + Cooking : | Sushi - 20% project |
In an ongoing collaboration between Gourmet Live and New York's Institute of Culinary Education, chef-instructor Erica Wides kicks off a new instructional series with a lesson in making your own maki...


Via Frank Kusters
Justin Hannahs's insight:

this will definitely be helpful

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Rescooped by Justin Hannahs from Glossarissimo!!

(EN) - Sushi Glossary | Make Sushi

(EN) - Sushi Glossary | Make Sushi | Sushi - 20% project |

"Sushi Glossary - Learn how to create stunning sushi dishes with the guidance of self-taught sushi chef, Davy Devaux."

Via Stefano KaliFire
Justin Hannahs's insight:

a great starting point 

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