Shoot, it makes total sense though; most nori I see says 'may contain crustaceans' on it...and the point about spirulina coming from the ocean too but it doesn't taste like fish makes it convincing that nori really does contain fish. I guess nori would be vegan if you harvested it yourself so you could pluck off any little crustaceans and throw them back in the ocean so they don't get grinded up with the sea weed when you make nori.
Even though sea weed is on a lower tropic level than fish it still does have mercury, part of it may be from the accidental crustaceans ground up in the production or maybe because you need large amounts of sea weed to make nori so the small amount of mercury adds up in the final product.
Have you ever gone tidepooling or kayaking in the ocean? You can see little sea snails and other small sea creatures living on the sea weed, attached to it.
I really don't see large manufactures hand picking their seaweed and throwing those little guys out you know?
I was aware of the mercury content before, and had cut back my nori intake to once or twice a month...but now I will be cutting it out completely now that I know it is not vegan.
I'm bummed...but hey, I was bummed when I cut out meat/eggs/dairy and all that too, but I got over it :).
Unless you make it yourself and pluck off every little crustacean attached to the seaweed, your nori isn't vegan.
Maybe unprocessed sea weed like kombu pieces would not have crustaceans, but then there's still the issue of how the company goes about harvesting it. I'll most likely be buying seaweed only from a small local company in my area that uses hand harvesting aboriginal practices.
They sell some in bulk online and I just emailed them asking if they remove crustaceans/shellfish before processing/selling their seaweed. I just told them I had a bad crustacean/shellfish allergy so they would take my question seriously lol.
Here's their page http://www.seaweed.net/default.html
When they get back to me I'll let you guys know...it would be cool to have a definite VEGAN source of seaweed/nori.
The nori sheets we use are certified organic and vegan :) The brand is "Gold Mine" They are raw and do not taste like fish like other sheets do. They are very expensive here in oz but you get that...
But don't animals die on the land and feed the plants and by that same logic in a round about way plants are not vegan? Seems a little much to me, that said I wouldn't eat Nori unless it comes from New Zealand, or at least I'd eat very little.
edit: there's a certain amount of insects ground up in oatmeal and whatever.
Hey, I'm glad you brought this up as well
I proposed a solution to this in the Raw Till 4 Forum
Nori Sheets Unethical <---- link
high carb hanna does a video on sushi rolls wrapped with collard greens. They look tasty.
The problem you have brought to focus is one involving a certain company rather than an industry. Every company is different in how they grow, harvest and prepare Nori. If you are worried about it you can research specific companies you like and discover how they produce Nori.
I agree with Mike, we accidentally eat other animals all the time. That doesn't make us bad people or not Vegan anymore. Being Vegan is about intention.
I think it's great you are thinking about specific foods and their impact on life. Your intention is pure.
Keep it curious. Keep it carbed :)