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Common Questions

Gold Seal® sustainability policy

The Canfisco Group’s business includes the fishing, processing and marketing of seafood products and is dependent on the sustainability of fishery resources. Therefore, as a responsible stakeholder, the Canfisco Group is committed to working with fisheries management agencies, local communities, First Nations, environmental groups and other stakeholders to ensure effective resource management systems are implemented that promote sustainable harvest of marine resources and maintenance of healthy ecosystems. Read more 

Canadian Fishing Company (Canfisco) is committed to sourcing sustainable tuna. We are continuously monitoring our supply ensuring that our tuna is sourced from fisheries that do not endanger any tuna stock nor the survival or health of other marine species. Read more

Gold Seal® canned salmon: wild or farmed?

Gold Seal® brand canned salmon is 100% WILD Pacific salmon.

How are wild Pacific salmon caught?

The two main fishing methods used to catch wild Pacific salmon for canning are:
Seine Net Fishing
Seine boats use large nets to encircle the salmon. The net is then drawn together into a “purse” so that the salmon cannot escape. These boats catch mainly sockeye, pink and chum salmon, and can select individual schools of fish.
Gillnet Fishing
Gillnets are typically used by small boats, are strung close to the shore, and are continually tended by the fishermen. Gillnet boats fish mainly for chum and sockeye salmon, and can selectively target certain species and fish sizes by the choice of net mesh-size and the manner in which the gillnet is suspended.

What does "dolphin-friendly" mean?

Gold Seal® is committed to ensuring that tuna packaged under our labels are caught without causing harm to dolphins. Gold Seal® Seafoods does not employ tuna fishermen, nor do we purchase tuna on a wholesale basis for canning. We purchase the finished product directly from our suppliers and we work with them to ensure that all tuna products under our labels are dolphin-friendly.

What is the source of Gold Seal® imported products?

Gold Seal® uses only the very best products for our brand which includes not only our salmon but also specialty products such as canned mussels, oysters, clams and tuna. Some of these products are not native to North American waters and must be imported from various Asian countries.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) regulates and inspects to ensure that imported seafood products meet or surpass the tough Canadian standards. In addition, our own Quality Assurance team travels overseas to inspect and approve the plants, the processing and the employee facilities on a regular basis. Furthermore, these products are regularly sampled and inspected upon arrival in Canada before distribution to the market to verify that they meet our Gold Seal® requirements.

In today's global economy, processors of canned seafood located on all continents that supply North American, European and various other markets are subject to the toughest regulations, inspections and the highest standards for sanitation, safety and quality. We can assure you that there are no issues regarding cleanliness or food safety within any of the packers' plants that supply Gold Seal® products.

What is the source of Gold Seal® canned salmon products?

Gold Seal® canned salmon products (labelled as product of Canada or USA) are made with 100% wild Pacific salmon caught off the coast of BC & Alaska. The fresh salmon is then processed in our canneries located in BC & Alaska.

Canned salmon or tuna storage, after opening

Canned salmon or tuna can be refrigerated for up to three (3) days after opening without spoiling. You can also freeze canned salmon or tuna in plastic freezer bags or containers. Just remember to thaw it before use. Freezing extends the storage time by up to three (3) months or more. As with the handling of any perishable food, however, canned salmon or tuna should not be left at room temperature for unnecessary periods of time after opening.

What is the shelf life of:

a) canned salmon
The shelf life of canned salmon is generally "advertised" as five (5) years. However, if properly stored in a dry pantry, the actual shelf life of canned salmon is 10 years or more, provided that the integrity of the can has not been compromised due to damage or corrosion. An easy to read Best Before Date is printed on every can.
b) canned tuna or other seafood (clams, oysters, mussels, crabmeat)
The shelf life of canned tuna and other canned seafood is three (3) years. An easy to read Best Before Date is printed on every can.
c) frozen salmon
The shelf life of frozen salmon is generally "advertised" as six (6) months under commercial cold storage conditions. However, if properly stored at -18ºC (0ºF) with protection from exposure to air and dehydration, the actual shelf life of frozen salmon can be up to 12 months without quality loss.


Do Gold Seal® canned seafood products contain preservatives?

No. Gold Seal® canned seafood products do not contain preservatives. As per the ingredients listing on the label, "regular pack" canned salmon contains only salmon and a little salt (approximately 1%) to accentuate the flavour. Nothing else is added to the product. The liquid contents of the can comes from the salmon itself as a result of the cooking process, and not from added water or oil unless otherwise specified.

What are the glass-like crystals sometimes present in canned salmon or tuna?

Small struvite crystals, commonly mistaken for pieces of broken glass, are sometimes found in canned fishery products. These naturally occurring particles of magnesium ammonium phosphate are colourless, transparent and tasteless.

BPA – Bisphenol A

Gold Seal® salmon products are packed in cans that DO NOT contain BPA (Bisphenol A). The only exception to this is our Skinless Boneless pink salmon Tuna Style with easy open lid.

A laminate is needed in order to prevent any transfer of metallic taste to the salmon and also to allow the salmon to be easily removed from the can. Cans and linings are specifically matched to the product that the cans will hold.

Although Health Canada's Food Directorate has concluded that the current dietary exposure to BPA through food packaging uses is not expected to pose a health risk to the general population, our company is continuously exploring avenues available to our tuna packers to ensure BPA FREE cans will be used for our canned tuna as well, in the near future.

What are the PCB levels in Gold Seal® canned salmon?

Levels of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in Wild Pacific Salmon are far below the regulatory safety limit established by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) and are considered to be trace levels only. This is due to the short life cycle of salmon (2-4 years), which is insufficient to bio-accumulate these substances, and the fact that wild salmon spend the majority of their lives in the open mid-Pacific Ocean, far from potential coastal pollution. Recently, the CFIA analyzed 10 samples each of Sockeye, Pink and Keta (chum) canned salmon packed by canneries in British Columbia. All of the samples had PCB levels less than 2 ppb (parts per billion); that is, very very low levels that are barely detectable even using today's sophisticated technology, which are 1000 times lower than the Canadian regulatory safety limit. For more information, see Health Canada's "Food safety and PCBs found in fish."

What are the mercury levels in Gold Seal® canned salmon and tuna?

Wild Pacific salmon have very low levels of heavy metals, including mercury. This is due to the short life cycle of salmon (2-4 years), which is insufficient to bio-accumulate these substances, and the fact that wild salmon spend the majority of their lives in the open mid-Pacific Ocean, far from potential coastal pollution. Mercury levels in wild Pacific salmon are typically undetectable at less than 0.05 ppm, which is ten times lower than the 0.50 ppm (parts per million) Canadian limit for mercury. Most of the canned tuna products sold in Canada are "light meat" tunas, such as skipjack and yellowfin, which have low mercury levels, typically in the 0.20 to 0.30 ppm range. Gold Seal® canned Albacore or white tuna products are monitored on a regular basis to ensure compliance with the 0.50 ppm Canadian limit for mercury. For more information, see Health Canada's Bulletin, "Information On Mercury Levels In Fish"

What is the curd-like substance found in canned salmon?

A white or creamy coloured substance resembling coagulated egg white is sometimes found on the surface of canned salmon. This substance is commonly mistaken for congealed fat. In fact, it is a protein-like material present in the natural juices of raw salmon flesh that gets separated out and coagulates during the cooking process. The coagulation of these proteins is similar to the coagulation of albumen protein in raw egg white when boiled.

What is the best way to store fresh and frozen salmon?

Place fresh salmon on a platter or pan with a double layer of paper towel underneath. Put two or three slices of lemon on the top of the fish. Then dampen a tea towel with tap water and lay over top. Wrap the fish and tray with plastic wrap and store on the bottom shelf of the refrigerator. The salmon should store this way for up to two (2) days.

Well-wrapped salmon will freeze for up to two (2) months in a refrigerator freezer, and three (3) to four (4) months in a deep-freeze. Using lined freezer paper, wrap the salmon tightly with at least two (2) layers of paper from head to tail. To thaw slowly, unwrap, place in pan and cover. Leave for 24 hours in the refrigerator. To thaw faster, place the whole fish in a sink with cool running water allowing about half an hour per pound. For even faster results, use the defrost setting of your microwave, allowing two (2) to five (5) minutes per pound with equal standing time in between zaps.