(Courtesy of Wegmans)
Wegmans Food Markets Inc. now is offering Florida Lionfish in stores in six states, officials announced Thursday.
The product is a non-native species in the Gulf of Mexico. Lionfish have no natural predators and reproduce quickly, which has caused rapid population growth, officials said. The population growth is harming the natural ecosystem.
Wegmans partnered with Wild Fish Direct to bring the fish to market in the Northeast, and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission recently issued a statewide hunting competition to help reduce the invasive population.
“We do our part to source seafood responsibly, and by introducing Lionfish in the markets we serve, we’re also helping control the population to protect the gulf reefs for the future,” said Mark Fromm, Wegmans seafood category merchant in a statement. “We love it when our customers are open to trying different kinds of fish. Lionfish are plentiful and tasty, but simply not as well known yet.”
Lionfish is a mild and delicate white fish similar in flavor and texture to Snapper, officials said. Customers can try Lionfish at select Wegmans stores this weekend.
It’s currently available locally at the Pittsford store for $12.99 a pound.
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