Chinese Catfish Pollute Mississippi Shelves

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File this one away under “Globalization, Horrors of.” While no one should be particularly shocked to learn that a foreign-produced food had to be removed from American grocery store shelves, this story should raise eyebrows because of the food involved and the location of the grocery stores.

The food? Catfish. The location? Mississippi.

Lester Spell, Mississippi Commissioner of Agriculture and Commerce announced that samples of Chinese catfish taken from stores in Clarksdale, Starkville, Gulfport, and Meridian tested positive for banned antibiotics ciprofloxacin and enrofloxacin.

The irony here, of course, is that catfish is one of Mississippi’s prime cash crops, ranking behind only cotton. Delta Pride, an Indianola, Mississippi-based catfish co-op is the largest processor of freshwater fish in the world.

It’s a good thing that those Kool-Aid pickles are available, or it’d be hard to find anything edible down there.

Pictured here is 2007 Miss Catfish, Erin Virginia Legg, crowned at the World Catfish Festival in Belzoni, Mississippi. They don’t make ‘em like that in China.

—Preston Lauterbach

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