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Dolphin Safe Tuna Labeling Questioned

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Environmentalists are suing to overturn the government€™s new dolphin safe tuna labeling standard.

The Earth Island Institute and other groups filed suit Tuesday in federal court, hours after the Commerce Department revised labeling standards.

The government announced tuna caught by encircling dolphins may immediately be imported into the United States and bear the “dolphin-safe” label – as long as observers aboard fishing vessels certify that no dolphins were killed or seriously injured.

Under the old definition, any tuna caught using dolphins as targets were automatically barred from bearing the consumer-friendly label on cans sold in the U.S. The suit says tuna fishing stresses dolphins to the point of fatal heart damage and causes mothers and their offspring to become separated.