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Environmental Working Group's Statement on Lancet Seafood Study

For Immediate Release: 
Friday, February 16, 2007

This study supports the long-standing advice of the federal government, the Environmental Working Group, and many other organizations: women should eat seafood during pregnancy known to be low in mercury and other harmful pollutants. Seafood contains omega-3 fatty acids and other nutrients vital to the rapidly developing brain of children in the womb.

This study is also the latest illustration of the tragedy of polluting this vital food source with the mercury pollution from filthy power plants and the burning of medical waste. The toxicity of mercury is beyond dispute, and this potent coal plant pollutant is one of the chemicals proven to harm the developing brain of a child in utero. The Lancet study shows that seafood nutrients boost the IQs of children, but it doesn't look at how much higher children's IQs would be if seafood was not so polluted.

Instead of funding propaganda groups and wagging its finger at those concerned about public health, everyone would be better off if the seafood industry joined us in stopping the mercury pollution of the oceans — and to support sustainable fishing methods so there are uncontaminated fish left to eat. It is in the long-term financial interest of the industry to clean up the food supply — while being honest with consumers about the current pollution in fish.

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EWG is a not-for-profit research organization that uses the power of information to protect human health and the environment. EWG's work on mercury in seafood and mercury pollution can be viewed at http://new.ewg.org/featured/216.

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