Seafood is one of the most popular cuisines in the country. A lot of Americans get their fill of fish, lobster and other critters of the sea at popular joints like Darden Restaurant‘s (NYSE:DR) Red Lobster and Yum! (NYSE:YUM) subsidiary Long John Silvers. There are also countless upscale seafood places and kitchy crab shacks that diners love.
Regardless of their fare, atmosphere or price structure, all seafood restaurants have something in common. They all have secrets, reports SmartMoney.com.
Here are five things you’ll never hear from your favorite seafood establishment.
“It’s your fault our prices are rising.”
Seafood consumption in the U.S. has been rising since 1960, causing a startling increase of the over-harvesting of fish stocks. As a result, the government has instituted catch limits for many species, says SmartMoney. Stricter limits equals higher prices.
“A slimehead by any other name. . .would sell better.”
Have you ever eaten a fish called slimehead? No, you say? How about the ever-so popular orange roughy? If you’ve answered yes to the latter, you’ve answered yes to the former. Orange roughy and slimehead are one in the same. Seafood restaurants obviously learned a few marketing and public relations lessons.
“You don’t always get what you pay for.”
Mislabeling may be illegal, but it’s still common. Very common. Many establishments successfully pass off inferior breeds of fish as red snapper, Florida grouper, wild salmon and other top species.
“The shrimp comes from the desert.”
Seafood doesn’t always come from the sea. It could come from a seafood farm. Seafood farming is growing in popularity in Las Vegas, West Virginia and non-aquatic regions of Texas.
“Our pasta is a rip-off.”
Pasta dishes at seafood restaurants are typically less expensive than other menu items, but that’s because they are much cheaper to make. In fact, the profit margin on a plate of linguine can be up to 20% higher.
There are five more secrets that seafood joints don’t want you to know. You can read them at SmartMoney.