Deadliest Catch has received some criticism for its authenticity in the past, but according to star Keith Colburn, people should instead turn their skepticism towards the fish market. Along with his co-stars, Colburn scours the Bering Sea in search of Alaskan King and Opilio crab. And even though his catches are clearly the right species, a lot of the time, the crab that people buy off the market isn’t.
In fact, the captain of the Wizard stated that distributors go to great lengths to make their crab product look like what the Deadliest Catch stars bring back to shore.
“And so it can be shipped in, and there’s lots of people that ship it in, repackage it, put it in a red, white and blue box and send it to stores and casinos and everybody else under the premise that it’s Alaskan King crab, Alaskan opilio crab. But a lot of times it’s not,” Colburn explained to Monsters & Critics.
Of course, these companies have to specify on their labels that their products aren’t actually Alaskan crab, but even still, it’s easy to mistake the fake for the real thing.
“Now they do have to put some kind of signage that says ‘product from Russia’ on the box,” the Deadliest Catch star shared. “But more times than not, it such fine print that you can’t hardly read it.”
‘Deadliest Catch’ Might Need Its Own Promotional Packaging
This isn’t just a local issue, either. According to Colburn, this intentional mistake happens at grocery chains across the country.
“Even the guys at the retail store or let’s see stores,” the Deadliest Catch star said. “I’ve done a lot of crab promotions throughout the United States with various companies like Kroger stores all over the United States, Publix stores, all over the United States, both of which have great seafood counters.”
Despite their positive reputations, these stores still put out misleading packaging.
“It is educating those folks as well because they get a red, white and blue box and they watch Deadliest Catch and they just make the assumption that it’s coming from us, when in fact it’s been repackaged input into the supply chain to look like it came from us,” he concluded.
Fans Will Have to Become Crab Detectives When at the Seafood Counter
Unfortunately, there doesn’t seem to be an easy fix to the situation. The only way to be certain that a package is truly from Alaska is to take a magnifying glass to the label. And though the effect on consumers might be minimal, the Deadliest Catch star revealed the detrimental result the almost-false advertising has on fishermen.
“So it’s really deceiving, and the deception has been so good that over the course of the last 23 years or more, the Bering Sea crabbers have lost over $1 billion in revenue to this,” Colburn shared.