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Congress Unites Against FDA Approval of Genetically Engineered Salmon

origami salmon

FDA May Approve the Controversial Fish Despite Widespread Opposition

Washington, DC – Yesterday a bi-partisan group of U.S. House Representatives introduced critical legislation (H.R. 521) mirroring a Senate bill from the end of January (S. 230) to keep the first genetically engineered (GE) food animal, AquaBounty Technologies AquaAdvantage salmon, off our plates. The controversial fish, which the FDA may approve any day now despite widespread opposition from the public and many federal lawmakers, has potentially disastrous consumer health and environmental consequences.

It is significant that Congress is united in taking a strong stand against this risky experiment. Food & Water Watch applauds Representatives Young, DeFazio, Jones, Polis, Stark, and Wu along with Senators Begich, Murkowski and Murray for overcoming party divides to join together in protecting U.S. consumers from this largely untested product.

Over 90 percent of the public does not want the FDA allowing GE meat into our food supply and even experts at federal agencies like the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service recognize environmental concerns. Why the FDA continues moving toward approval is baffling. To approve GE salmon now would represent flagrant disregard for the legislative process and the concerns loudly expressed by the U.S. public.

At least 30 House members and 14 senators have written the Obama administration either expressing serious concerns about the manner in which the FDA conducted its review of Aquabounty’s GE salmon, or calling for the outright prohibition of its approval for human consumption. So why isn’t the FDA listening?

Image Credit: Creative Commons photo by Joseph Wu Origami

8 comments
  1. Beverly Hoppe

    Now is the time to dismantle the FDA, and replace it with an agency that actually represents the safety of the US consumer. How much longer do we endure this debacle of Big AG-backed FDA profiting at our expense?

  2. Jenn the Greenmom

    I’m just hugely impressed that Congress is stepping up and hollering about this. I mean, yes, the “FDA-WTF” question is very pertinent, but at least someone–or a lot of someones–in a POSSIBLE position to do something about it is speaking up.

  3. Plantiful

    It’s not baffling at all why the FDA would love to approve this hi-tech “human chow”… they have former executives from Monsanto in there… and this would only help their (Monsanto’s) products as well.

    If this stuff gets passed, tell everyone not to buy any farm-raised salmon at the stores and especially restaurants (ask them if it is farm-raised or real). If I do not know what I am buying, I don’t buy it and I certainly don’t eat it. If a large enough decrease in salmon consumption is seen, then the fish “farmers” will complain to the government, and then (and only then) will something will be done. It’s all about money.

    Note that Senators Kerry and Brown are missing from the list.

  4. Genetically modified salmon at The MTTLR Blog

    […] Opponents to approval argue that the FDA should reconsider its position and impose a mandatory labeling requirement on all genetically modified foods, contending that consumers have a right to know important facts about products they consume, and that it is especially important for consumers to know if a food has been genetically modified due to uncertainty about whether the food is safe.Β Β  Opponents are also concerned about potential environmental consequences, including the potential for modified fish to escape into the wild and breed with traditional salmon, thereby “damaging the gene pools of wild stocks.”Β Β  Worried about consumer health and environmental consequences, on February 8, the U.S. House of Representatives introduced H.R. 521, mirroring a Senate bill proposed in January, to keep the salmon out of the marketplace. […]

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