MEDIA ALERT: Misreporting on Mercury in Tuna Study Misinforms Consumers

February 3, 2015 WASHINGTON, DC Irresponsible and sloppy reporting on a new study published in the Journal Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry may scare consumers into thinking that mercury levels in tuna could become potentially hazardous. The critical fact is that none of the measured levels of methyl mercury in the tuna species studied pose a health risk to consumers. The demonstrable and scientific health benefits of eating seafood continue to far outweigh the theoretical risks.

This study is neither about human health nor nutrition, and does not illustrate any harm from eating tuna or any other seafood. It should not be used to offer nutrition advice to readers, listeners or viewers. Regardless of minute increases suggested in this report, mercury levels in tuna remain far below any levels associated with harm.

More than a decades worth of published, peer-reviewed science clearly demonstrates eating fish leads to concrete health benefits including, but not limited to, improvement in cardiac health, boosts fetal and infant cognitive development, and higher intelligence . To suggest this study in any way undermines the current science and these proven facts, or should be taken into account when consuming fish, is disingenuous and misleading.

We encourage reporters, editors, and producers to use NFI as a resource for all things tuna, and to publish responsible articles that reflect the scientific consensus on the health benefits of consuming fish.