The following is a chronological order of events for those following the GM Salmon issue. This is a “hot” issue like Bill C-474. Your immediate action is called on to keep this fish out of the North American food chain, permanently.
Posted: October 4: Organic Consumer’s Association
The 10 Freakiest Things About Frankenfish
Here’s the Organic Consumers Association’s latest Huffington Post blog on GMO salmon:
10. According to the FDA, Frankenfish Aren’t Animals, They’re “Animal Drugs”
Normally, a veterinary drug would be used for health purposes, but there’s no therapeutic benefit associated with jacking up an Atlantic salmon with the genes of a Chinook salmon and the eel-like ocean pout to make it grow twice as fast.
The biotech industry pushed FDA to treat genetically engineered animals like drugs because they knew the drug evaluation process would keep companies’ “proprietary” information secret, while limiting public participation and downplaying food safety concerns.
9. The GMO Part of the GMO Salmon Isn’t Being Safety Tested
Since 1992, the FDA has operated under the legal fiction created by the Bush-Quayle Administration that there is no risk associated with the human consumption of genetically engineered plants and animals. The FDA explains that DNA is Generally Recognized as Safe, so genetically engineered DNA is safe, too, and it doesn’t have to be safety tested.
8. Frankenfish DNA Could Change the Bacteria of Your Gut
A human study conducted by the UK’s Food Standards Agency found that consuming genetically engineered soy can result in “horizontal gene transfer,” where the bacteria of the gut takes up the soy’s modified DNA. With GMO salmon, the bacteria of our digestive tracks could take up the engineered salmon genes, but the FDA isn’t looking into whether this would happen or how it might effect our health, because…
7. If It Swims Like a Salmon, FDA Says It’s Safe to Eat
Instead of reviewing the safety of consuming genetically engineered salmon DNA, the FDA food safety review is a simple quacks-like-a-duck-style comparison of genetically engineered and normal salmon.
6. FDA Lets the Frankenfish Company Test Its Own Product’s Safety
The FDA’s food safety review of GMO salmon consists of collecting data produced by AquaBounty, the company that wants to sell it. Not surprisingly, that data is seriously flawed with bias and bad science.
5. Frankenfish Is More Carcinogenic
GMO salmon has 40% more IGF1, a hormone linked to prostate, breast and colon cancers in humans.
4. Frankenfish Is Less Nutritious
GMO salmon has the lowest omega-3 to omega-6 ratio of all the salmon in the studies FDA reviewed, greatly reducing the health benefits of associated with eating salmon.
3. Frankenfish Is More Allergenic
GE salmon have mean allergenic potencies that are 20% and 52% higher than normal salmon, increasing the risk of potentially deadly allergic reactions.
2. GMOs Can Mess a Fish Up!
The FDA notes evidence of “increased frequency of skeletal malformations, and increased prevalence of jaw erosions and multi-systemic, focal inflammation” in the tissues of GMO salmon, but dismisses these findings as “within the range observed in rapid growth phenotypes of non-genetically engineered Atlantic salmon.”
Turns out “normal” factory farmed salmon selected for rapid growth and subjected to the physiological stress of intensive production are already afflicted with “screamer disease,” which deforms 80% of Chilean salmon, and “humpback” spinal compression, found in 70% of Norwegian salmon operations.
Thanks, FDA, for letting us know that factory farmed salmon are so messed up! But, that’s no reason to turn them into Frankenfish!
But the freakiest thing about all of this is…
1. The Government Wants More Transgenic Fish and Less Wild Fish
The main justification for GMO salmon is that it could reduce the pressure on wild fish stocks, but consumption isn’t the primary pressure on wild salmon, destruction of their habitat is. The spawning grounds of wild salmon in Bristol Bay, Alaska, are threatened by plans for Pebble Mine, which would be the largest open-pit copper and gold mine in the US. A disaster at Pebble Mine could mean the destruction of a quarter of a billion pounds of salmon, about the same amount of GMO salmon AquaBounty hopes to produce. The EPA could stop Pebble Mine through the Clean Water Act but has failed to act.
October 1, 2010: Biotech Gets Fishy with GE Salmon
Some say genetic engineering was always fishy, but now the fish
themselves are engineered.
For 15 years genetically engineered (GE, also called genetically
modified or GM) canola, corn, and soy ingredients (and recently, some
GE sugar) proliferated in processed foods in North America. (www.cban.ca/gefoods) Now salmon is the next genetically engineered food that threatens to be introduced to market.
AquaBounty, a Massachusetts-based biotechnology company, is asking the
US to approve its genetically engineered Atlantic salmon for human
consumption, and says it will ask for approval soon in Canada as well.
The company claims its “AquAdvantage” salmon grow to market-size twice
as fast as other farmed salmon. That’s because the Atlantic salmon are
engineered with a growth hormone gene from Chinook salmon, and genetic
material from ocean pout (an eel-like creature). The fish produce
growth hormone throughout the year, rather than just for 3 months as
they would normally.