Aug 04, 2017, AquaBounty announced the sale of 5 tons of genetically engineered AquaAdvantage Salmon to commercial buyers in Canada. Eating this salmon might lead to serious health issues (see below). Because it’s unlabeled, the only way to avoid it is to 1) stop eating salmon, 2) only buy wild caught, or 3) know the source. Please help get the word out to Canadians so that they can protect themselves.
There have been no sales in the U.S. but that could change. FDA granted approval in 2015, but commercialization was delayed while the FDA sorts out the labeling question. But the agency’s food safety evaluation was widely criticized as grossly inadequate. First of all, FDA evaluates data submitted by the company as opposed to conducting its own tests. Secondly, they don’t have a comprehensive set of requirements. In fact, they treat the salmon as if it were an animal drug, not a food for human consumption. Third, AquaBounty’s data was based on a tiny sample size of SIX FISH! Consumers Union presented a detailed commentary on FDA’s appraisal of safety issues associated with AquaAdvantage Salmon (2010).
Especially alarming was the FDA’s dismissal of data on elevated levels of IGF-1, the insulin-like growth factor that may significantly increase risks of colorectal, breast, and prostate cancer. Based on the company’s data the FDA concluded:
“IGF1 levels appeared to be elevated in mature diploid ABT salmon compared with mature diploid non-GE farm-raised Atlantic salmon”
They dismissed it since “the difference was not statistically significant.” But with just six fish, of course it wouldn’t be!
In addition to the cancer risk, the data suggests potentially increased allergenicity and higher levels of antibiotics. This product should never have been approved for human consumption. Given the absence of comprehensive and thorough regulatory action, we are urging consumers to be avoid GE salmon.
If you have suffered a reaction from consuming GE salmon, please let us know. Email Jeffrey Smith at the Institute for Responsible Technology.
Read more about the risks from two Huffington Post articles by Jeffrey Smith: