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Genetically Modified Salmon: Will It Be On Your Dinner Table?

Genetically Modified Salmon: Will It Be On Your Dinner Table?

Would you serve your family genetically modified Atlantic salmon that was sterile and grew twice the normal rate in order to protect wild salmon in the ocean?  This appears to be the marketing strategy taken by scientists in order to get the first genetically modified animal for human consumption approved.

 

In the wild it takes Atlantic salmon three years to mature because they do not grow during the winter.  But according to the Telegraph, when scientists implanted genetic material from an eel-like species called ocean pout, the fish grew all year long and were full size after only 18 months.  However the GM salmon, called AquAdvantage, were all sterile.

 

The salmon were developed by a company called AquaBounty Technologies.  They’re publicizing they have discovered a safe process for breeding salmon quicker in fish farms, while leaving wild fish in the ocean untouched.  Their process could also double their profits because the GM salmon will reach the marketplace faster.

 

The GM fish are currently being examined by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).  But if the agency gives its stamp of approval, GM salmon could be at local grocery stores within a year.

 

Currently there are no GM animals approved for human consumption and the public has repeatedly shown an aversion to the idea.  However, most livestock raised at commercial farms are fed GM food from crops such as corn and soy.

 

If the FDA approves the GM salmon, it could lead to more genetically engineered animals.  The University of Guelph in Canada has been experimenting with its “enviropig,” a pig that is bred to digest food more effectively and have less pollution in its manure.

 

Animal advocates and environmentalists are opposed to the idea of GM animals.  The Telegraph said, “…campaigners question whether the GM material is safe for humans to consume and fear the sterile salmon will mutate in the wild and be able to breed.”

 

AquaBounty claims there are no risks to the public or the fish in the wild.  They see it as an efficient way to produce a nutritional food and believe they are saving wild salmon.  While this may be true, no one is considering that the GM salmon are real, living beings that will be affected by this process. 

 

Lord Melchett, policy director at the Soil Association in the UK weighed in with his opinion, “Once you have bombarded an animal with other genes, the DNA is unstable, and there is no guarantee these fish remain sterile.  It poses far too great a risk to wild salmon…..we will pay the price.”

 

 

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110 comments

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7:21AM PST on Jan 8, 2011

check out

www.OrganicConsumers.org

Food for Thought---and Action at www.brook.com/food

FishingHurts.com

6:56PM PDT on Sep 26, 2010

Odd I read 1 artical that said the Aqua Advantage salmon were 90% steril . They US and canadian goverment have been funding with grants aquaBounty what they will actually do is hand over exclusive ownership rights of all wild Atlantic salmon within 10 years to Aqua bounty and they will do it becuse any offspring even mixd with wild salmon will belong to aquabounty.
Gmo fish of any kind is something to frear! Not because of health reasons for legal reasons.
Aquadvantage salmon are 90% sterial if just 2 precent get lose and reproduce with the wild salmon then aquaadvantage will have exclusive ownership rights to all alantic salmon in just 10 years.
How because the Us courts have already rulled time and time again on this same issue with monsanto and their GMO seeds. This will be the same with fish! If just a few get loose and cross breed the offspring will belong to AquaAdvanttage and they will have a right to a teconology fee on the fish.
As of 2006 Monsanto filed lawsuits against 9000 farmers in Canada and the U.S.A. on the grounds of patent infringement, specifically the farmers' sale of seed containing Monsanto's patented genes. In some cases, farmers claimed the seed was unknowingly sown by wind carrying the seeds from neighboring crops, a claim rejected in Monsanto Canada Inc. v. Schmeiser. These instances began in the mid to late 1990s, with one of the most significant cases being decided in Monsanto's favor by the Canadian Supreme Court. By a 5-4 vote in late

5:30AM PDT on Sep 22, 2010

My first post here, hope it is OK.

They tell us that these fish will help alleviate the pressure of wild fish, what a load of rubbish. The netting of sand eels, in the North Sea has caused a dramatic fall in the populations of Puffins and other birds which depend on them for food, the sand eels were being harvested t provide food for farmed salmon.. How dare they tell us that a fish, which they still insist in calling Atlantic Salmon, which is obviously is not, will lessen the pressure on the wild fish, when the thing will eat at least five times as much a wild fish, when they will be raping the seas for food for this monster.

Anatomically this GM fish my well be the same as an Atlantic Salmon, but it is not one. How can a fish which has, as part of it's genetic makeup, genes from a pacific salmon and an eel like fish, possibly be marketed as an Atlantic Salmon?

Respectfully Wez

10:50AM PDT on Jul 31, 2010

so many foods are now unsafe or risky. All because of pollution.

6:29PM PDT on Jul 13, 2010

Thus far GMO products do not have to be labeled as such. I hope this will not carry through with an animal malipulation product! With many foods one can only be sure if purchasing organics, which are not always available. Organic Salmon seems an impossibility. God help us!

6:01PM PDT on Jul 11, 2010

Scary!! I cant believe it! how far until we are going to get everything genetically modified.. even ourselves.... this is sick how this thing is alowd to be done.

1:04AM PDT on Jul 11, 2010

That's the same as serving hormone inducted milk. Funny how people are aging and living longer, yet our children are entering puberty younger. I think it's due to the genetically altered state of things. Go back to natural everything, and watch everything return to a good state.

All farming needs to stop growing single crops w/ no rotation, etc. and all these chemicals given to plants & animals just to make the bigger bucks. It's making all of us sick, and that's costing MORE than the farming profits.

7:38AM PDT on Jul 10, 2010

I would not feel safe eating any food source tampered with by any big corporation. It's getting easier by the day to make my diet simple and healthy. Don't eat packaged, processed foods. Don't eat meat in almost any form. Only wild caught and from areas known to be relatively clean is the criteria for sea food. At the rate of current pollution. I figure I'll have to give up all forms of sustenance in 15 to 20 years...sigh...just when they've come up with so many good recipes...

1:49AM PDT on Jul 9, 2010

thanks

7:03PM PDT on Jul 6, 2010

Guess we feel that it is easier to genetically modify nature than to preserve it or to learn to live with it.

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