FDA approves genetically engineered salmon, no label required
(NaturalHealth365) While Americans may have a diversity of opinion on many issues, they do have one area of widespread consensus – that genetically modified food poses a health risk and ought to be labeled. That commonly held belief was delivered a blow recently, however, when the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the sale of genetically engineered salmon as food fit for consumption.
The move marks the first time the federal agency has granted approval for a bioengineered animal to be deemed fit for consumption as a genetically modified food. Further, in a move that mirrors its stance on genetically engineered crops, the FDA ruled that the salmon would not have to be labeled as genetically engineered, leaving consumers in the dark as to what they are putting on the dinner table.
Inadequate GE food testing makes this a really bad idea
The genetically modified salmon, developed by the financially struggling AquAdvantage, contain a growth hormone gene taken from the Chinook salmon as well as a genetic switch from the eel-like ocean pout. The influence of the GMO ocean pout causes the transplanted gene to run continuously, rather than just certain months of the year. AquAdvantage claims the GMO salmon are ready for market in 18 to 20 months, compared with 28 to 36 months for non-GMO salmon.
GMO opponents have criticized the FDA’s decision to shoehorn the GMO approval issue into existing policy regulating veterinary drugs rather than going through the more arduous task of developing a new, appropriate regulatory process geared specifically for genetically modified food. The FDA has defended its position by stating that the gene inserted into the animal meets the definition of a drug.
There are other critics of the FDA’s approval that say approving the genetically modified salmon brings with it risk to the environment and existing, non-modified species. Further, they point out that the FDA is ill equipped to implement an adequate environmental assessment as a necessary part of the review of genetically modified food.
Don’t be distracted: GMOs are strongly linked to higher cancer risk
Although the biotech industry is fond of telling the general public how safe GM0 foods are, the truth is their animal feeding trials on GMOs are all three months or less in duration. This does not give adequate time to determine longer-term consequences.
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Last year, the American Academy of Environmental Medicine (AAEM) voiced its concerns about the use of GMO foods. AAEM pointed to numerous animal studies that showed oxidative stress, altered structure and function of the liver, intestinal damage, disruption of the immune system, increased cell growth and hundreds of alterations in gene expressions.
About 800 million pounds of pesticide chemicals are sprayed on crops in the U.S. every year. Their use has skyrocketed with the introduction of GMO crops, with application of RoundUp increasing 15 fold alone. While more research is necessary to determine the longer-term effects of GMO products to human health, there is little doubt an increase in pesticide chemicals will lead to an increased risk of disease.
Do these chemicals sound ‘safe’ to you?
Although the jury is still out on what specifically GMO products do to our human systems, there is no doubt whatsoever that pesticide ingredients like cyanazine, methyl bromide and malathion can lead to hormone imbalance, xeno-estrogen buildup and breast cancer.
Whether the genetically altered salmon will actually sell is another question. Some leading supermarkets have already banned it. Because grocers are listening to public outcry, it is essential to make your voice heard to them about GMO salmon and all GMO food.
Never forget: Our purchasing dollar has tremendous influence in this world.
Let your supermarket manager know you believe bioengineered food to be a health risk, based on scientific research. Further, insist that any GMO products that are sold, be properly labeled in the store, at the point of sale.
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