GM Salmon: Swimming Against the Regulatory Tide

Diane Katz /

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is considering whether to approve for human consumption a genetically modified (GM) salmon that holds promise for satisfying the growing demand for seafood and to allow wild stocks to revive. The science on “transgenics” is firmly on the side of approval. The more pressing debate—largely a consequence of unwarranted regulation—centers on product labeling. Fortunately, that’s rather simple to remedy.

The AquAdvantage salmon, which grows twice as fast as its farm-raised cousin, was bred with a Chinook salmon gene for a hormone that accelerates growth in the first year. Genetic material from an ocean pout, an eel-like species, was also introduced to keep the growth hormone active throughout the year. (more…)