Frequently Asked Questions
If you have questions that are not answered here, please feel free to contact us.
How does Safe Catch Tuna have the lowest mercury limit of any tuna brand?
We are not aware of any other brand besides Safe Catch that screens every wild tuna to a mercury limit.
Mercury levels between two individual tuna can vary widely even between two tuna of the same size, same school and from the same location. We’ve tested over 2,000,000 fish for mercury levels and tested wild tuna with mercury levels over the FDA mercury limit of 1.0 parts per million (ppm). That’s why Safe Catch tests every single tuna and salmon to strict mercury limits and Safe Catch is the only brand that tests every single tuna and salmon for mercury.
How much mercury is in your products?
Because we are the only brand that tests every single tuna and salmon to a strict mercury limit, we are the only brand that can ensure the mercury content of the salmon or tuna in each product will not exceed the posted limit. We test every single of salmon and tuna (100%) while no other brand tests even 0.1% of their fish.
No other brand tests every fish to a mercury limit.
A Peer reviewed Independent study of Light Tuna on store shelves shows mercury levels that range over 1.00 ppm mercury*.
Safe Catch only uses fish that are tested and pass the strict limits defined below:
- 0.1 ppm for Safe Catch Elite which is 10x lower than the FDA limit of 1.00 ppm.
- 0.1 ppm for Safe Catch Ahi Wild Yellowfin Tuna which is 10x lower than the FDA limit of 1.00 ppm.
- 0.1 ppm for Safe Catch Wild Sardines which is 10x lower than the FDA limit of 1.00 ppm.
- 0.04 ppm for Safe Catch Wild Pink Salmon which is 25x lower than the FDA limit of 1.00 ppm.
- 0.38 ppm for Safe Catch Wild Albacore which is 2.5x lower than the FDA limit of 1.00 ppm.
However, due to our meticulous testing, all the fish Safe Catch uses average even lower concentrations:
- 0.04 ppm for Safe Catch Elite which is 25x lower than the FDA limit of 1.00 ppm.
- 0.04 ppm for Safe Catch Ahi Wild Yellowfin Tuna which is 25x lower than the FDA limit of 1.00 ppm.
- 0.02 ppm for Safe Catch Wild Sardines which is 50x lower than the FDA limit of 1.00 ppm.
- 0.02 ppm for Safe Catch Wild Pink Salmon which is 50x lower than the FDA limit of 1.00 ppm.
- 0.20 ppm for Safe Catch Wild Albacore which is 5x lower than the FDA limit of 1.00 ppm.
* Gerstenberger, S. L., A. Martinson, and J. L. Kramer. An evaluation of mercury concentrations in three brands of canned tuna. Environ. Toxicol. Chem. 29: 237–242(2010)
How does Safe Catch Elite test as pure as wild salmon and meet Consumer Reports “Low Mercury” criteria set for sensitive populations such as pregnant women and children?
Due to the wide variance of mercury levels found in wild tuna, Safe Catch invented a proprietary technology that allows Safe Catch to test every single tuna to strict mercury limits. No other brand does. Every fish used in Safe Catch Elite tuna is tested to a mercury limit 10 TIMES stricter than the FDA limit. If the fish does not pass our strict limit, Safe Catch does not buy the fish.
Safe Catch Elite tuna tests as pure as wild salmon based on the reported mercury levels reported for wild salmon in the Seafood Hg Database compiled for A Quantitative Synthesis of Mercury in Commercial Seafood and Implications for Exposure in the U.S. – (Karimi 2012), which is the largest peer reviewed database of mercury levels found in seafood. http://ehp.niehs.nih.gov/1205122/
Safe Catch Elite tuna tests well below the limit and average mercury levels required to meet the “Low Mercury” criteria set by Consumer Reports for sensitive populations such as pregnant women and kids.
Source: Consumer Reports: Mercury in Fish Recommendations Methodology. (Aug 2014)
Why don’t other brands test each tuna for its mercury level?
You would have to ask the other brands. We started as a technology company and invented proprietary testing technology to screen seafood for mercury. We offered to test and certify purity for other brands but every brand we approached declined. So, we used our technology to start our own brand and we call it Safe Catch. Safe Catch is the only brand that tests every single tuna to a strict mercury limit.
Why does Safe Catch tuna retain more Omega 3s than conventional twice cooked tuna?
Conventional twice cooked tuna is made by putting the fish in large pre-cookers on open racks, machine processing it, rehydrating the precooked tuna in the can and cooking it again. As a result, conventional tuna lose many vital Omega-3 oils as the fish precook on racks and the oils drain away. The machine processing also impairs natural flavor and texture.
At Safe Catch we do it differently. We hand cut and hand pack solid wild tuna steaks to seal in all the natural oils and nutrients and slow cook each one just once for an amazing taste. Do not drain Safe Catch tuna. There are no additives and fillers. Empty it into a bowl, chop up the steak and mix it. The tuna will reabsorb its natural oils and juices for a moist and delicious taste. You can eat it right out of the can or use it in your favorite recipe.
Why do many experts recommend eating fish over taking Omega 3 supplements?
Tuna contains much more than just Omega-3s. Tuna has B vitamins, niacin, potassium, selenium, thiamin, and all nine essential amino acids.
Now, as it relates to just Omega-3s, there seems to be a debate among the experts as to whether pills are effective. If you google “fish vs. Omega-3 pills” you’ll get both sides of the coin. We are not experts but we can say this, you’ll definitely get the benefits of seafood by eating seafood.
Why do Safe Catch Tuna and Salmon say: Do Not Drain?
At Safe Catch we do not add oil, water, fillers, preservatives, or GMO-Soy broth to our tuna or salmon. When you open the can or pouch you will find a solid steak with naturally occurring fish oils and juices that are full of healthy Omega-3s. It tastes better and is better for you!
Open the can or pouch of Safe Catch and pour everything into a bowl. Break up the meat with a fork, mix it up and let it reabsorb its natural oils. You can even break up the tuna or salmon in the pouch and eat it right out of the pouch. Safe Catch products are moist and flavorful, so they taste great by themselves or added to your favorite recipe!
Are Safe Catch Products BPA Free?
We pack all our canned tuna and salmon products in tin free steel cans, with linings that are not made with BPA and do not have the intentional addition of BPA. These can linings are compliant with the strictest US and EU BPA-NI standards. Our sardines are packed in tin coated steel containers, with the same type of can lining as our other canned seafood products, made without BPA or intentional addition of BPA. Our pouched products are made with materials that are not made with BPA and do not have the intentional addition of BPA.
Additionally, we routinely test finished product using accredited 3rd party testing labs to ensure that BPA does not find its way into our products by uncontrollable means. To date we have not found any detectable levels of BPA in any of our products. We will continue to test our products for the presence of BPA to ensure that the packaging materials we are using for all our Safe Catch products are the safest possible materials available.
What are your tuna and salmon cans made out of?
Our cans are made out of tin free steel. The can lining is an organosol resin that is made without BPA.
What are your sardine tins made out of?
Our sardine tins are made out of tin coated steel (tinplate). The can lining is made from organosol resin that is not made with BPA or the intentional addition of BPA.
What are your pouches made out of?
Our pouches are made from a very thin layer of aluminum that is laminated with polyethylene terephthalate (PET).
Why does your packaging no longer claim BPA Free?
We continue to only use packaging made without BPA or the intentional addition of BPA. Our can linings are compliant with the strictest US and EU BPA-NI standards. However, BPA is a chemical that can be present in the environment so it is technically possible that it can be found in any food product. As a company that prides itself in transparency, and in response to the recent California Prop 65 legislation, we chose to remove the BPA claims from our packaging.
Why does Safe Catch not pack its Elite tuna in water or oil?
We don’t add water or oil. In fact, we don’t add any sort of filler to our Elite tuna. We pack whole tuna steaks in each can or pouch by hand and add nothing else. We pack this way (fresh-pack) to retain all the naturally available nutrients and Omega-3 oils. Everything that comes in each can or pouch is great to eat.
Why is Safe Catch Elite Tuna less expensive?
We want everyone to be able to eat our purest wild tuna. Business people or ‘Sharks’ have told us to price Safe Catch Elite higher than our Albacore or other brands. We want everyone to be able to enjoy it. Give it a try. You’ll love it.
How much mercury is safe?
This question is impacted by many factors (age, weight, pregnancy) unique to you so we encourage you to talk to your trusted health professional.
Mercury is naturally occurring in the water and soil. Trace amounts occur naturally in all types of seafood and many other foods. The human body naturally processes mercury over time. The key is not to get exposed to high levels of mercury causing the body to accumulate mercury faster than the body can process it.
Due to increasing man-made pollution, mercury levels can vary widely even between individual fish of the same species, size and location. There are still plenty of really pure tuna in the sea. But, the only way to know the mercury level of a single fish is to test it. That’s why we invented technology to test every single tuna to strict mercury limits and Safe Catch is the only brand that does.
We launched Safe Catch tuna because we want pregnant women, kids, athletes and everyone to feel great eating tuna.
Are your products certified Kosher?
All of our products are manufactured under the supervision of the Orthodox Union. They are certified Kosher by the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregation of America.
What is the shelf-life of your products?
Our tuna and salmon cans have a 3 year best by date from the date the cans are packed, which is usually 2-3 months before they are sold at retail. The best by date is printed on each can.
Our tuna and salmon pouches have a 2 year best by date from the date they are packed. The pouches also have the best buy date printed on the back of the pouch.
Our Wild Sardines, in water have a 3 year best by date from the date they are packed. Our Wild Sardines, in extra virgin olive oil have a 5 year best by date from the date they are packed. The best by date is printed on each tin.
Two occasional, healthy and natural things can occur due to our single-cook process:
I see a small glass like looking crystal. (It can happen with naturally cooked tuna and is safe to eat.)
These harmless, naturally occurring crystals are called struvite. They are formed by magnesium, ammonia and phosphate which are naturally found in canned seafood. Sometimes during the cooking process these elements combine to form what looks like tiny glass particles. Struvite is not harmful and will readily dissolve in the digestive juices of the stomach where the minerals can be absorbed by the body.
I see light searing or browning on one side when opened. (Light searing - like grilling.)
This brownish coloring is the natural result of cooking our fish without added liquids. The natural fat and juices that cook out of the meat during the slow cook process don’t always surround all sides of the meat. What results is a light searing effect, similar to the result you get when grilling. This simply adds to the superior flavor as compared to boiling it in a can of oil or water.
Our Testing Process
Does Safe Catch test for radiation?
We do test for radiation. We do not test every fish, but we send in samples of finished product to accredited 3rd party labels to test for radiation. Our most recent analysis was conducted on April 4th, 2019. Our Elite wild tuna, Ahi Yellowfin, and Salmon products were tested for the presence of harmful radionuclides that include Cesium-134, Cesium-137, and Iodine–131, which are considered to be the radionuclides of greatest concern to the food supply following a nuclear power plant accident. There was NO detectable presence of ANY of the aforementioned radionuclides found in our Elite, Ahi, or Salmon products.
In addition to our testing, we have conducted a lot of research about cesium and the potential impact of radiation exposure from the Fukushima disaster in wild seafood. The locations and fish types that we are sourcing have not shown any health problems with cesium. We’ve reviewed the data from the FDA which conducted 1,345 screens on products coming from Japan, specifically in regards to Fukushima. 225 of those tests were on seafood products. We’ve also reviewed hundreds of independent tuna tests. These tests show that radiation levels in tuna that we are sourcing are hundreds of times below the FDA level for concern.
What do you mean when you say “proprietary technology”?
What do you do with the fish that don’t make the grade?
What is the Safe Catch published mercury limit?
- Our Elite Wild Tuna and Wild Ahi Tuna are tested to a mercury limit of 0.100 ppm, which is 10X stricter than the FDA action limit.
- Our Wild Pink Salmon is tested to a mercury limit of 0.040 ppm, which is 25X stricter than the FDA action limit.
- Our Wild Albacore Tuna is tested to a mercury limit of 0.380 ppm, which is 2.5X stricter than the FDA action limit.
- Our wild sardines are tested to a mercury limit of 0.100 ppm, which is 10X stricter than the FDA action limit.
What is Safe Catch Elite Tuna?
Are your fish wild or farm raised?
Safe Catch tuna, salmon and sardines are exclusively wild caught from responsibly managed stocks and fisheries. For more info check out our Sustainability and Socially Responsible Sourcing Policy.
How do you ensure that your tuna does not come from ships that use forced labor?
We never purchase tuna caught from any unregulated fishing boats. Every single lot of tuna we purchase comes with a Fisheries Certificate of Origin, which is heavily regulated by the US Dept of Commerce, and a Captain’s Statement that is signed by the captain of the boat that caught it. Some of those vessels are actually US vessels, but they only represent some of the many countries that do abide by the U.S. Department of Commerce Fisheries Certificate of Origin laws. We never purchase tuna from boats that are unregulated or from countries that don’t abide by the U.S. Department of Commerce Fisheries Certificate of Origin program. Every lot of tuna we purchase is first inspected for the appropriate Fisheries and Sustainability documentation, inspected for quality, then tested by our own employees before we decide to purchase it. Our canning facility is world class, and undergoes almost daily social and sanitary audits by its customers and very respected global agencies such as British Retail Consortium (BRC), Safe Quality Food (SQF), and the SGS Business Social Compliance Initiative (BSCI). For more info check out our Sustainability and Socially Responsible Sourcing Policy.
Are Safe Catch fish sustainably caught?
Our albacore tuna are caught individually using the pole and troll method.
Our Elite tuna and our Wild Ahi Yellowfin tuna are school caught, a process also known as FAD-Free (fish aggregating device free) purse seine. If demand requires that we use other sources for our Wild Ahi Yellowfin tuna, we may use yellowfin tuna that are caught individually using the pole and troll method.
Our Wild Pink Salmon are caught in a Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified fishery using Set Gillnets, Purse Seine, and Driftnet methods. https://fisheries.msc.org/en/fisheries/alaska-salmon/@@view & https://fisheries.msc.org/en/fisheries/iturup-island-pink-chum-salmon/@@view
Our Wild Sardines are “free school” purse seine caught in the Eastern Central Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Morocco. Our sardines are certified by Friend of the Sea to be in compliance with Friend of the Sea Criteria for sustainable fisheries.
Safe Catch is a proud Ocean Wise Partner and proudly follows the recommendations of the Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch® program. Sustainable fishing is very important to us. For more info check out our Sustainability and Socially Responsible Sourcing Policy.
Where are your fish caught?
Safe Catch Elite tuna is made with skipjack tuna (Katsuwonus pelamis) caught in the Western Central Pacific catch area which is part of the Western Central Pacific Ocean (WCPO) skipjack tuna stock.
Our Wild Ahi tuna is made with yellowfin tuna (Thunnas albacares) caught in the Western Central Pacific catch area which is part of the Western Central Pacific Ocean (WCPO) yellowfin tuna stock. If demand requires that we use other sources for our Wild Ahi Yellowfin tuna, we may use yellowfin tuna that are caught individually using the pole and troll method in the Indian Ocean.
Our albacore tuna (Thunnus alalunga) are caught in the Northwest Pacific catch area and the Western Central Pacific Catch area. Our albacore tuna comes from the North Pacific Ocean albacore tuna stock.
Our Wild Pink Salmon (Oncorhynchus gorbuscha) are caught in the Northern Pacific Ocean (FAO 61 & 67). We only use wild pink salmon that are caught in Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified fisheries.
Our Wild Sardines (Sardina pilchardus) are “free school” purse seine caught in the Eastern Central Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Morocco. Our sardines are certified by Friend of the Sea to be in compliance with Friend of the Sea Criteria for sustainable fisheries.
We constantly investigate and monitor catch locations so that we can continue to sustainably provide the purest seafood available. For more info check out our Sustainability and Socially Responsible Sourcing Policy.
Is Safe Catch Tuna dolphin safe?
Yes! We are approved by the Earth Island International Monitoring Program as a Dolphin-Safe Distributor. http://www.earthisland.org/dolphinSafeTuna/DolphinSafeImportRetail.php We also make every effort on our own to ensure that all of our tuna is truly dolphin safe. Our Albacore tuna is Pole and Line caught, which means that each individual fish is caught with one pole and one hook. This method makes it virtually impossible for a dolphin to be hurt. Our Elite wild tuna, which is our purest tuna, is FAD Free, school caught, using purse seine nets. Every single lot of tuna that we catch comes with a signed statement from the captain that states that “no dolphins were killed or seriously injured in the sets in which the tuna were caught.” Each and every lot of tuna we purchase is first inspected for the appropriate Fisheries, Dolphin-safe, and Sustainability documentation, inspected for quality, then tested by our own employees before we decide to purchase it. This ensures that you are getting the purest tuna of any brand. For more info check out our Sustainability and Socially Responsible Sourcing Policy.
What is traceability and why is it important?
Traceability is simply knowing where every fish comes from and also knowing where every fish we pack ends up. Traceability is important to ensure safety and purity in our food. For more info check out our Sustainability and Socially Responsible Sourcing Policy.
Orders & Subscriptions
Where can I purchase Safe Catch Tuna?
To find a physical store near you, use the Store Finder by clicking the ‘Find a Store’ tab and enter your postal zip code to see stores near you that carry Safe Catch. If we are not in your favorite store, let us know which store so we can call them for you.
What is your return policy?
Trouble with ordering online?
Make sure you have selected a quantity (6 pack, 12 pack, or 24 pack) in the drop down box to the right of ‘Quantity’ on the product ordering page.
Other issues? Please contact us at 888.568.4211 (toll free) or email [email protected] and we will do our best to help you right away.
How does your monthly subscription program work?
How do I make changes to my subscription or update my payment information?
Our mission is to provide consumers with pure and delicious seafood, while also protecting purity in our oceans, lakes, and rivers.
Contact Safe Catch
85 Liberty Ship Way, Suite 203 Sausalito, CA 94965 USA