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Surprising Science

You Are One Step Closer to Eating GMO Salmon

The FDA has released documents stating that salmon genetically modified to grow faster are safe to eat and will not harm the environment. Now the public has 60 days to review the information.

What’s the Latest Development?

The FDA have released preliminary documents declaring that genetically modified salmon are safe to eat and environmentally harmless. Now the public has 60 days, as of December 27, to comment on the publication before the FDA begins making its final decision. The salmon in question have been modified with a growth hormone gene from Chinook salmon, which causes them to grow twice as fast as normal fish. “Since 1995, a company called AquaBounty, based in Maynard, Massachusetts, has been seeking approval from the US government to sell its AquAdvantage fish.”

What’s the Big Idea?

More than a danger to human health, environmental organization are concerned about what could happen were the genetically altered fish to procreate in the wild. A faster-growing salmon population could possibly overwhelm natural species, damaging wild ocean fisheries. As a precaution, the FDA says the salmon are all female and have been given three copies of each chromosome rather than two, making them sterile. Organizations also say the timing of the information’s release is suspect since the review was completed last April but released only after the national election.

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