The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the first ever genetically modified animal safe for human consumption in the United States. This genetically-modified salmon, is fast growing and has the genes of other fish spliced into its DNA. Consumer concerns continue to grow but the agency said that the fish is safe to eat.
In the stunning announcement, the FDA says that there are “no biologically relevant differences in the nutritional profile of the AquAdvantage Salmon compared to that of other farm-raised Atlantic Salmon.” Critics are calling for concern over this lab created monster-fish, they are worried that it could cause human allergies and the eventual decimation of the natural salmon population if the fish escapes and tries to breed in the wild. The patent for the fish is owned by just one company, which again creates another “unnatural” monopoly, economically.
AquAdvantage Salmon was created by AquBounty and grows twice as fast as natural salmon, so it reaches market size more quickly. It has an added growth hormone from the Pacific Chinook salmon, so the frankenfish produce the hormones all year. The engineers kept this hormone active by using another gene from a completely different species of fish an “eel-like creature”, called an ocean pout that keeps the trigger for the fish set to on. Typical salmon only produce the hormone for part of the year.
Some retailers have pledged not to sell the salmon, and it’s still unclear whether the public will have an appetite for the fish.