‘No matter the color, no matter the fish: Caviar isn’t fancy. It’s a product of unsustainable practices.’
It has become very fashionable to use red caviar – ‘roe’ – to add some novelty and colour to dishes. The bright orange balls can be seen adorning crepes and festooning sushi rolls. They’re vivid, they go ‘pop’ in your mouth, and they taste a bit like the sea. Few people, however, have any idea how the eggs are harvested. PETA, the world’s biggest animal rights organisation, has resolved to cure us of our ignorance.
The stomach-churning video reveals how salmon are forced to swim inside small enclosures until their bellies are sliced open and their eggs removed. Salmon eggs are very popular in Japan, where they’re known as ikura and usually consumed with rice or a type of sushi known as gunkan. But salmon aren’t the only fish subjected to this brutal treatment: herring, tuna, cod, Alaska pollock, flying fish and mullet are also popular in Nordic and Mediterranean countries.
PETA says that to harvest the caviar ‘some fish – who feel pain and fear as all animals do – are sometimes cut open while they’re still alive so that their eggs can be ripped from their ovaries.’ The organisation adds that ‘no matter the color, no matter the fish: Caviar isn’t fancy. It’s a product of unsustainable practices.’