Mislabeling of fish products not only impacts consumer finances, but can also be deleterious to public health. Fish products may be mislabeled for reasons including ambiguity of common fish names, challenging morphological identification, or willful intention to deceive. We reveal a high rate of mislabeling (70%) in 34 samples from 17 cases entrusted to us by three different Customs offices and one Coastal Patrol Office in Taiwan using DNA barcoding based on a partial segment of the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I gene (COI). In order to reduce the mislabeling of imported fish products, the authorities should take some actions into consideration, such as institutionalizating molecular authentication of fish products, standardizing the usage of common fish names, and legislating for penalties.
- Molecular authentication