Great video of a wriggling worm found in fish at a New Jersey restaurant

Originally published at:


This is not just “uncommon” its normal for cod this time of year. Cod is riddled with worms and parasites. They tend to be dormant/eggs during the winter. Fish can be flash frozen to kill parasites or they can be removed in fresh cod. But often enough something slips through. I’ve run into this so often it wouldn’t even occur to me to make a stink about it on social media.


This would gross me out, but I certainly wouldn’t blame the restaurant (unless it’s a frequent occurrence.) It’s bound to happen from time to time.

Worms ? Same thing… very common in Pacific Fish too.
Gotta cook 'em if you don’t like er… ‘live’ worms.


Yeah repeated occurrences. Or a whole lot of worms (its never one if they’re in the fish) would mean they don’t bother to try and clean the fish. Or are lax about it. But worms happen with cod. And some other fish as well.

1 Like

Some chefs say the live worms are a sign of its freshness.


It’s hard to find fresh gagh so far from the homeworld.

Also, I think at this point, for their own protection from doing stupid things to exacerbate a bad situation, anyone planning on opening any kind of service business should be required to read a primer on the Streisand Effect.


Do worms cost extra?


Hmm, I’d say the fish was underdone if the worm was still alive. Is it possible it came from one of the vegetable items on the plate? I’m not versed in identifying various species of worm, but I’ve had numerous arguments about eating fresh raw fish with my fellow NJ fishermen, some of them Youtubing it, they simply don’t believe in Anisakis and other parasites. I’ve seen Anisakis in local fish.


Not clicking the vis, but I have to ask; was the fish in the aforementioned entree cooked?


According to the article another patron claimed to also have found a worm in his fish, so I’m guessing they were undercooking as the worm was very much alive. Apparently it’s also been identified as a parasite that cause diseases in humans. The restaurant only gave the party of three a one-third discount instead of comping their whole meal which was…not so smart. Then they attacked him for posting the video to Facebook. So much fail.


This is why I avoid sushi. I prefer my parasitic fish worms thoroughly dead, TYVM.


Actually, this proves you’re safer with sushi. In the US all sushi must be frozen for a specified period at a specified temp before serving to kill parasites.


Yeah, that’s one of the things I’m looking forward to about vitro-meat.

The often tragically underestimated key to staying at the top of the food chain is being suitably careful about organisms that are quite good at leaping up a rung or two from a camouflaged position.

1 Like

Dammit! Sushi refers to the vinegared rice; it may or may not have raw fish. Sashimi generally refers to raw fish or even meat.

Definitely, citations please as I think you are wrong.


I looked around and you are correct, the FDA strongly recommends, and most vendors comply, but there is no actual regulation.

This NYTimes article is apparently responsible for the misinformation.

Most would be even more surprised to learn that if the sushi has not been frozen, it is illegal to serve it in the United States.

Food and Drug Administration regulations stipulate that fish to be eaten raw – whether as sushi, sashimi, seviche, or tartare – must be frozen first, to kill parasites. ‘‘I would desperately hope that all the sushi we eat is frozen,’’ said George Hoskin, a director of the agency’s Office of Seafood. Tuna, a deep-sea fish with exceptionally clean flesh, is the only exception to the rule.

Then later in the piece:

The Food and Drug Administration does not enforce the frozen-fish rule, leaving that to local health officials. The agency says sushi fish can be frozen either by the wholesaler or in the restaurant, and each party likes to believe that the other is taking care of it.


No bueno.

Si bueno!


Thank you for that. For one thing, I’d argue that seviche is full cooked; amazing what lemons do to sea food. Another thing is that freezing seafood fundamentally changes it. I’ve worked in upper scale restaurants. One time, at a fine Italian place, a plate with shrimp was returned because the idiot did not know he was getting fresh (fully cooked, mind you, but fresh) shrimp. Apparently only used to the rubbery stuff many of us are familiar with. Another time I remember chef screaming at a waiter for saying the stuff was ‘fresh frozen’. IT CANNOT BE FRESH AND FROZEN!! THAT IS AN OXYMORON!! WE SERVE FRESH!!!

The top sushi chefs quoted in the Times article disagree.

The FDA disagrees, and I’ve seen recipes vary widely about the acidity and time of marination for ceviche. Some as brief as 15-30 minutes. Food safety seems a very personal and local thing. I think the US Northeast got complacent about Anisakis because for decades there were no seals around for it to flourish in as part of it’s lifecycle. Now they, and the worms, are back.

A decade ago I ate a barracuda I caught on a boat in Cancun, only to find out afterwards that was a great risk for Ciguatera poisoning. Did the guide know the area was low in Ciguatera or just didn’t care and we got lucky?

From now onwards, I’m going to eat all my fish crispy. And burnt.