What Jumps In Peoria Today Is In The Human Food Chain Tomorrow


"Silver carp have the ability to jump high into the air,..." Image credit:University of Missouri Extension

In the long view of imports, Asia has sent North America far more hazardous things than lead painted toys and melamine tainted pet food and milk. For example: the Asian or "Silver Carp." Wikipedia documents the direct danger posed by jumping carp to humans:- "Many boaters traveling in uncovered high-speed watercraft have been injured by running into the fish while at speed...Water skiing in areas where silver carp are present is extremely dangerous." A Peoria, Illinois company has found economic uses for the invasive, face-slapping Silver Carp:- ground and dried into protein powder to be sold as cattle food supplement; and as a source of Omega-3 fish oil.Originally brought into the US to benefit commercial aquaculture - Silver Carp are filter feeders that were introduced to help control algae levels - they escaped into the Mississippi River watershed, spread like wildfire, and now threaten the Great Lakes fishery as well as water skiers and boaters. The Morris Daily Herald reported on the new animal feed enterprise.

This nondescript metal building at the end of a long, country road soon will begin to transform the Asian carp, known for destroying the Illinois River’s native-fish ecosystem and causing havoc among boaters, into two valuable commodities. All while helping the environment...The process begins at one end of the building, where the fresh fish are weighed and put into an industrial-sized meat grinder.

From there, the loose-meat mix gets baked fast and hot until it becomes a brown, sawdust-like material. After that, it gets squeezed through a press to extract the Omega-3 oil.

Why not? It's much better than over harvesting anchovies and sardines for the same markets.

More posts on Asian Carp.
Swimming to Chicago: Asian Carp
Caviar For Commoners...and Vegans

Tags: Fish | Illinois

WHAT'S HOT ON FACEBOOK

New to TreeHugger?