Shrimp: The Disgusting Truth

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NPR and advocacy group Public Citizen have reported on the disgusting and dangerous conditions of Asian shrimp farms, the same farms that supply 90% of the shrimp in the United States. The Young Turks Ana Kasparian and Cenk Uygur discuss. The Largest Online News Show in the World. Google+: Facebook: Twitter: Support TYT for FREE:

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bouyaharumuchi says:

So is a shrimp fishery the same as a shrimp farm?
and are we even allowed to see where the prawns originate from on the packaging?

aussieincal009 says:


dawnofworld says:

So is Shrimp hated now after watching this?

njintau says:

Welp, definitely not eating Shrimp anymore…

LostManSays says:

We need Forest and Captain Dan to catch all our shrimp. Cant get any more American than that.

Blackmark52 says:

“You are conflating… three distinct processes.”

No I’m not. I’m simply making a more general statement. And I’m not inclined to get into the kind of detailed discussion you are trying to engage. (Good grief, a five part post?) I am not a scientist, so I can’t comment on what you write, but some of it I find questionable. Suggesting GMO foods could cause cancer? Not out of the question, but so do a lot of foods without modification.

Greed is another matter not specific to anything.

TheAndreArtus says:

Seeing that everything in and around us is a chemical it is fair to say that chemicals do cause cancer. Whether from inheriting or aquired damage to DNA, exposure to chemical mutagens, viruses, chemical changes brought out by ionizing radiation, or chemical distruptions to programmed cell death &c.

Chemicals are also the foundation for life, so there is that.

But I know what you are saying, I have run into those people who “don’t want to ingest chemicals”. My reply to that: “then stop living”.

TheAndreArtus says:

By working with lawmakers to avoid having to disclose their products in processed food they are trying to take away my ability to make a choice, and to vote with my money. Companies like Monsanto are already driving up seed prices (GM and non-GM) in places where they have gained sufficient control. Their loyalty is to their shareholders, not the farmer. How is this working towards feeding the poor? I’m not anti-GM, I’m anti-thug.

TheAndreArtus says:

Farmers can’t save seed, without having it ALL tested, for fear of lawsuits if their seed is contaminated (“Monsanto Canada Inc. v. Schmeiser”). Some farmers complain that GM crops are used to drive them out of business, which often leads to having to sell their land at a huge loss.
The GM makers use legalese to both claim their product as
1. not significantly different from non-GM so don’t need extra testing, and yet
2. significantly different enough to entitle and enforce a patent.

TheAndreArtus says:

Continued . . .
GMO’s designed for pest resistance have genes introduced from non-food organisms that naturally produce the desired toxins (pesticide). Some of these proteins may have a strong immediate effect on the pests, but a gradual accumulative deleterious effect on humans. Some proteins have a destabilising effect on apoptosis (PCD) which attending adverse health issues that include increased risk of cancer. The problems take decades to manifest –it’s reminiscent of the tobacco battle.

TheAndreArtus says:

You are conflating, at least in characterization, three distinct processes: digestion, absorption, and assimilation. Nucleic acids (DNA, RNA) hydrolysed through enzymes called nucleases into nucleotides. The nucleotides are mostly broken down into sugars, phosphates, and nucleobases (A,G,C,& T/U) and absorbed in that way. These products are assimilated during normal cell activity.

The issue isn’t that the DNA has changed, but that the protein products have changed.

To be continued . . .

Blackmark52 says:

“DNA is digested”

Are you suggesting DNA has nutritional value? (That’s a joke, I don’t assume you do.) I would imagine all chemical components have to be dealt with in some way to be used by the body if not expelled. But that’s not common perception of digestion which is — eat fat, get fat, eat protein, build muscle, etc. Ingesting GMO strains of DNA isn’t going to affect our DNA. I think this is the fear people have ; they liken it to chemicals causing cancer.

And speed is dangerous, but…

TheAndreArtus says:

True, except for the last sentence, but incomplete. DNA is digested (small intestine) but that’s not important in this discussion. The point of gene manipulation (all types) is to alter the biochemistry of a plant. Humans have done this, over centuries, by breeding crops to make them more palatable, with the concomitant effect of reducing their natural chemical defences against pests and parasites. Bred in changes are small accumulations studied over decades or more, GMOs not so much.

Blackmark52 says:

“It is possible to transfer animal genes to plants”

I didn’t deny the possibility, the point was “So what?” But I think the perception is that the final product is some sort of animal vegetable hybrid sci-fi horror movie monster. DNA is just DNA and humans share genetic makeup with vegetables. That is how we know all life is on earth is related. It doesn’t make us part vegetable. Also we don’t digest DNA, we digest oils and proteins and sugars.

TheAndreArtus says:

A friend of mine started growing and selling food and other plants (all legal) in high school and clocked over US$60000 before graduating from HS. He developed it into a business, but not everyone wants to do that. The point is that you are never too young to do something significant. If you have the space you can start a herb & vegetable garden or plant in pots.
You want to plant things that:
- you like,
- has frequent yield,
- easy to care for,
- is suited to local conditions.

TheAndreArtus says:

It is possible to transfer animal genes to plants. If you want to avoid “anti-gmo hearsay” then why not consult a college microbiology textbook, specifically “Principles of Gene Manipulation” I have the 4th edition, but I see a new one (8th Ed) is coming out soon. Chapters 12 (“Gene Transfer to Plants”) and 16 (“The Impact of Recombinant DNA Technology”) may be of use to you.

TheAndreArtus says:

That is true. In fact every time you contract a retrovirus you are subject to a bit of genetic engineering. As it stands a significant percentage (8%) of our genome is made up of human endogenous retroviruses (HERVs). But noone has a patent on these older seeds, and noone is sueing the farm out from under you when you for save non-GMO seeds. My issue with GM isn’t the tech, it’s how they bait and switch small farmers. I have reasons to believe that it has in cases been used to grab land.

TheAndreArtus says:

I’m not in principle opposed to GMOs. I think genetic engineering has a place: I studied gene manipulation over a decade ago and it is a fascinating technology. But this commonly held idea that we need it to feed the world is a complete fallacy. The prevalent issues in many African nations seem to be war and a lack of infrastructure. The crops grow when you plant them. I could go on and on for days on this subject.

TheAndreArtus says:

They are not all created equal. I don’t know about Thailand, but in India there are some very good farms, and some really terrible ones. The problem is that you cannot guarantee which you will be sourcing from.

TheAndreArtus says:

The whole point with Monsanto’s “Roundup Ready System” is that farmers would save money on herbicides and labour intensive weeding. Now many of them are finding that they are not saving money and are increasingly plagued with “Roundup Ready” weeds (so called superweeds) and parasitic fungi. Some of the safety claims made by Monsanto, e.g. regarding biodegradability and bioaccumilation, have been proven false. Furthermore, studies have shown the Roundup system leads to soil degradation.

TheAndreArtus says:

The idea that organic produce is inherently expensive is a complete fallacy. I helped with a project to set up low income villages with organic farms and we did this because it was the most cost effective way for them to produce food. The problem with organic methods is that they are not conducive to industrial methods and monocultures. Distribution, storage, and processing is easier with industrial methods. This is not an issue for poor rural communities.

mattbenz99 says:

The problem is that well I don’t buy most of my food because I’m still in highschool and my mom does the shopping

TheAndreArtus says:

Often people who used to farm, and make a living, off the lands now used for, or adjacent to, the shrimp farms are plunged into abject poverty and starvation as the soil is rendered brack. They cannot even afford the shrimp that are ruining their livelyhood. This is not helping the poor at all. If you really wanted to help feed the poor you would buy their goods at a fair price. Not drive down the value of their labour so that you can get fat while they starve.

TheAndreArtus says:

How much money do you spend in a week on food and beverages? Would you want to eat better (healthier & tastier) and save money if it meant doing 30min extra work every day? When I started back in the day it was to save money, more than anything else. Now I’m saving money not only on the food items, but on lower healthcare costs.

TheAndreArtus says:

Search for “Antibiotics Illegal in the US Found in Samples of Foreign Shrimp” if you think it impossible.
The way the shrimp is traded in India (don’t know about other countries) makes it impossible to track whether it came from the most pristine ponds or a cesspool. Producers routinely use insecticides such as Endosulfan (banned in the EU and US for adverse health and environmental effects). Shrimp are frequently injected with dirty pond water before sale to plump them up (make more money).

mattbenz99 says:

The thing is I plan to eventually go to organic foods but that will most likely have to wait till I finish college and have a job

TheAndreArtus says:

People look at the price on the packaging, but they rarely assess the real cost. Local, organic, seasonal, and fresh means you are spending your money in the local economy. ‘Cheap’ food means more fertilizers, herbicides, fungicides, pesticides for plants, and more antibiotics and growth hormones for animals; you pay with your health. You become more susceptible to infections, yet less responsive to treatment. If you care about CO2, potable water, or soldiers’ lives, then factor that in as well.

TheAndreArtus says:

I like shrimp. and I like bacon, but I don’t hate myself so I avoid cesspool shrimp and factory pork. I know that I’m the odd one out, but I will never understand how people can put any old shit into their mouths. I know money can be tight, but I have managed to eat fresh, organic, and local for less than $50 a week. And except for a recent skydiving accident I have not needed serious medical attention since ’91. I’m 38 but tests show my functions to be in the norm for someone in their mid 20′s.

TheAndreArtus says:

‘Cheap’ food isn’t cheap.

The producer lowers their cost through externalities and deferred charges. That means society (that’s you) ends up paying for it through other means, e.g. pollution and concomitant health problems. In India villagers are pushed off their land by gangs of thugs so that some corporation can get another poor villager (outsider) to farm shrimp in what amounts to a cesspool. Some ponds have an inflow of human excrement, thus the required antibiotics. Your health suffers.

mattbenz99 says:

i hate myself for it but im not giving up shrimp or bacon or any type of meat even though it’s disgusting

MPSecare says:

seafood is fucking nasty

dokha says:

its not only in the US. this is an example of how much ordinary people lost control

fmlAllthetime says:

Come over :) . It’d be nice to have you.

mrslig100 says:

60p-ish for organic food?! ill fetch my suitcase.

Fernanda Castillo Almeida says:

they should consume Ecuadorian shrimp

fmlAllthetime says:

Far more farmland here. Cheaper food prices. You can find some organic stuff at the 1$ store some times.

mrslig100 says:

Organic!?, I dont know how rich you Americans are but you cant afford anything like that in Britain.

bigraviolees says:

Remember that when the GOp wants to stifle or eliminate the FDA

Theiammadmad says:

that’s why I get my shirmp from argentina or peru.

Logan Caron says:

So the Asian’s are trying to kill us.

bornbillsmith says:

A good reason to become Kosher.

13kumiko says:

They’re bottom feeders, its like the roach of the sea.

gabsis11 says:

Screw this! I can’t eat meat cause of mad cow disease, I can’t eat chicken cause of the hormones, I can’t eat fish cause of mercury in the water! I AM EATING MY SHRIMPS!

themunchkym says:

I love how he says “Planet Earth” the same way he says “Young Turks” when he signs off sometimes. Like he’s signing off for the world.

kennyjdonahue says:

WTF!!! Forrest Gump lied to me!!!!!!!!!

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