Wild Salmon vs Farm Raised Salmon
Salmon being a very popular source of protein for humans, demands for it are met by producing both wild caught and farm raised fishes. There are few species of fish considered as salmon, and all of them are being raised in farms, as well. However, people often wonder which salmon would be the better than the other, or whether there is any difference between the two. In fact, there are many considerable differences between wild and farm raised salmons, and this article attempts to discuss those.
Wild salmon is a very expensive and highly nutritious food, and they mostly inhabit the temperate waters of the world. Salmons being anadromous fishes, they swim upriver to breed and die, and then the hatchlings that grow there swim down the rivers, to reach the sea to spend the other stages of their lifecycle. These fishes usually have to be ever active during the whole life to sustain until the next generation. Therefore, every individual in each wild population is strong enough to survive all the obstacles while migrating in and out of the sea through streams and rivers. Usually, all the wild salmons are slender, and the body is highly streamlined. They have a strong musculature system that is efficiently functioning, especially when they move upriver through waterfalls. When they are considered as a food fish, it appears that the nutrient content is rich with high quality proteins. The essential fats such as omega-3 and omega-6 are present in a balanced 1:1 ratio. The total fats in wild salmon averages around 2 – 6 grams per serve and the total calories per serving vary from 95 to 145. However, only less than 20% of the market demands could be filled with wild salmon.
Farm Raised Salmon
Due to the high demand for salmon as a food fish, the salmons have been raised in captive farms, in large numbers. More than 80% of the world salmon come from farms, and that figure is close to 90% in the United States. The majority of them are raised in open pen nets (more than 50% of salmon in the world market) while about 30% of salmon in the world market being coming from traditional hatcheries. The farm raised salmons are well fed animals with a real steady diet every day. Usually, they are extremely well protected from fungal, bacterial, and viral attacks through preventive techniques. Salmon farm owners introduce antibiotics, copper sulphate, and pesticides to prevent the salmons being attacked by unnecessary microorganisms. It has been a common practice that the canthaxanthins are used to get the characteristic wild pink colour in the flesh of fish. However, due to the presence of all those practices, farm raised salmons considerably deviate from their wild relatives. The nutritional value becomes low with high contents of fats (5 – 10 grams per serving), varied omega-3 to omega-6 ratios, high levels of total calories per serving (135 – 185), and low protein content. The presence of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) is extensively high among captive salmons with a considerably high level of carcinogenic PCBs. The use of pesticides and other chemicals to prevent the attacks from microorganisms could be detrimental for their consumers. Despite all the health effects associated with them, farm raised salmon is affordable for people in terms of prices.
What is the difference between Wild Salmon and Farm Raised Salmon?
• Wild salmon could be found only in their natural habitats, while captive salmons are raised throughout the world.
• Wild salmons are slender and highly streamlined in their body shape, whereas farm raised salmons are stout-bodied.
• Wild salmons are more active and stronger than farm raised ones are.
• Harmful health consequences could be high due to the consumption of farm raised salmons, but wild salmons do not pose much threat to their consumers.
• The salmon market comprises of considerably more farm raised than wild salmons. Therefore, wild ones are more expensive than others are.