If you have an ACS member number, please enter it here so we can link this account to your membership. (optional)

ACS values your privacy. By submitting your information, you are gaining access to C&EN and subscribing to our weekly newsletter. We use the information you provide to make your reading experience better, and we will never sell your data to third party members.



FDA Faces Lawsuit Over Mercury In Fish

by Britt E. Erickson
March 17, 2014 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 92, Issue 11

Credit: Shutterstock
A photograph of a grocery store-packaged cut of salmon.
Credit: Shutterstock

A coalition of consumer and environmental advocacy groups is suing FDA for failing to respond to its 2011 petition that asks FDA to give consumers more information about mercury in seafood. The lawsuit, which was filed on March 10 by Earthjustice on behalf of the Center for Science in the Public Interest and the Mercury Policy Project, asks that a court-ordered deadline be set for FDA to respond to the 2011 petition. FDA ignored its own regulations, which require it to respond to petitions within 180 days, the coalition claims. The petition urges FDA to require signs at seafood counters and labels on packaged seafood with the amounts of mercury in the products. Exposure to methylmercury, the main form of mercury found in seafood, has been linked to learning disabilities and neurological impairment. “The public—and especially at-risk groups such as pregnant women and heavy fish eaters—urgently need updated information,” says Michael T. Bender, director of the Mercury Policy Project. FDA last updated its fish consumption advisory in 2004.


This article has been sent to the following recipient:

Chemistry matters. Join us to get the news you need.