WASHINGTON, DC — December 10, 2004 — In an effort to educate consumers about how fish can be incorporated as an important part of a healthful diet, the Food Marketing Institute (FMI) announces the availability of a new brochure: Mercury and Fish. The publication, which was developed in cooperation with the International Food Information Council (IFIC) Foundation and Fight BAC!, identifies appropriate levels of fish consumption for women and young children; fish with safe and unsafe mercury levels for women and young children; and the health benefits for all consumers associated with consumption of omega-3 fatty acids, which are most commonly found in fish.

“As Americans increase their intake of fish, concerns have been raised about the mercury levels associated with certain varieties,” said Dagmar Farr, FMI’s group vice president of legislative and consumer affairs. “This brochure aims to clear up some of the existing confusion, as well as explain how fish and shellfish play a key role in a healthful diet.”

The brochure includes an illustrated chart of the 20 most consumed fish and shellfish in the United States that are lower in mercury, as well as a chart of fish that women and young children should avoid because of their higher levels of mercury. The brochure states that women who may become pregnant, pregnant women, nursing mothers and young children can safely consume 12 ounces total per week of fish and shellfish that are lower in mercury. A typical serving size of fish is 3 to 6 ounces, although this should be smaller for young children.

The brochure also includes a chart detailing the omega-3 content of three-ounce portions of various fish and shellfish, including farmed and canned salmon, tuna, rainbow trout, haddock, cod, oysters, crab, lobster and shrimp.

“Consumers have been bombarded with conflicting information about fish and health,” said David B. Schmidt, Executive Vice President of the IFIC Foundation. “FMI’s Mercury and Fish brochure will be a great consumer resource to put the risks and benefits of fish in the diet into context.”

Facts about mercury in fish, such as how it enters the food chain and the associated health risks, are included in the brochure. The brochure also lists the health benefits of fish consumption.

Mercury and Fish has been favorably reviewed by the American Dietetic Association.

To purchase a Mercury and Fish color brochure ($0.25 members, $.0.50 associate members and $1 nonmembers), please contact the FMI Store at (202) 220-0723 or visit the FMI Store at www.fmi.org/pub/.