This is a fascinating study of fish fraud recently published by Oceana, a nonprofit conservation group. Genetic spot-testing has discovered that a big percentage of the fish we buy is intentionally mislabeled. Common fish are being substituted for more expensive varieties on a routine basis.

I make no excuses for unscrupulous profiteers, unless they are in need of my criminal defense skills. However, we consumers are partly to blame. Once the catch is processed into filets or fish sticks, no one can really tell what it is – it is just a matter of faith at that point. If we bought our fish with the head still on, counterfeit fish would be impossible to sell.