Skipjack tuna is caught in nets that can also capture endangered animals such as dolphins.
Skipjack tuna is a saltwater fish found in many areas around the world and is the most common tuna caught commercially. They are often used in Japanese cuisine as a substitute for yellow tail tuna and are the main tuna sold across the planet in cans as “light fresh” tuna. Like most fish, skipjack tuna has many health benefits for consumers, including high levels of omega-3 fatty acids, DHA, and healthy protein.
Skipjack tuna is available for purchase in canned form.
Skipjack tuna lives in almost all oceans in large schools. Up to 50,000 fish can live together in a group. They generally feed on smaller fish, crustaceans and molluscs and also provide staple food for large predatory fish and sharks. Because they reproduce quickly and live in such large groups, their numbers are considered sustainable compared to how many tuna are caught by humans each year. They are also one of the healthiest fish for the same reason, providing more health benefits for people.
Skipjack tuna can have moderately high levels of mercury.
Skipjack tuna is generally considered safe to eat, although it can have moderately high levels of mercury from contaminated water. Therefore, pregnant women should eat fish in moderation. Those who aren’t pregnant can consume it more safely, although low-mercury fish such as salmon may be healthier options if the fish is eaten several times a week.
Due to the risk of mercury to the fetus, pregnant women should avoid skipjack tuna or eat it in small amounts.
Although skipjack tuna is considered a fully sustainable commercial fish, the capture methods used for fishing are the subject of debate. Tuna nets often catch other fish species and even some endangered animals such as turtles, sharks and dolphins. This has resulted in many deaths of endangered sea creatures and has been heavily scrutinized by people who care about the environment.
Some species of tuna – which provide the popular fresh and canned fish – can grow to over six feet in length and weigh hundreds of pounds.
In addition to being bought by millions of people each year canned or frozen, skipjack tuna is a very popular option in Japanese cuisine. The Japanese call skipjack katsuo and usually make it smoked and dry. It is then added to other dishes or used as a fish stock. It is also sometimes used as a less expensive option for yellowfin tuna or yellowtail tuna, which are generally more expensive to purchase and prepare.
A fish with less mercury, such as salmon, is a healthier option than skipjack tuna for fish eaters.
Skipjack tuna can also be prepared in a number of other ways, including grilling or roasting. Many recipes used for other types of fish, such as salmon, can be applied to skipjack. There are also pre-flavored and smoked options alongside the well-known cans of tuna, with tuna being sold in bags. This tuna can be served in crackers or in various recipes.