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The notion of DNA barcoding promises clarity in an otherwise unsure world. Consider that a large amount of food we eat seems to be mislabeled. And there are undoubtedly animal and insect species right under our noses that haven’t yet been “discovered.”
Just think what it might do for mayfly identification if Orvis sold streamside kits.
In the New York Times, Joshua Robinson reports on a Manhattan school project that has turned up some interesting results, like “sturgeon caviar” that came from a Mississippi paddlefish, and tuna sushi that was actually tilapia (one of the least-healthy farmed fish). “‘You could have a filet of fish, just the stuff you might throw on your grill, and an expert who spent his whole life couldn’t tell you what it was by looking at it,’ Mr. [Matt] Cost said. ‘But with this, it’s so simple.'”