Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

FDA Extends Comment Period for GE Salmon

GMO
FDA Extends Comment Period for GE Salmon

Obama Foodorama

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Wednesday announced that it is extending the mandatory public comment period on the approval of genetically engineered (GE) salmon. Originally scheduled to end on Feb. 25, the public comment period, with two documents available for comment in the Federal Register, will now close on April 26. The salmon would be the first GE food given the green light for human consumption. 

The extension is for two documents related to the approval of Massachusetts company AquaBounty Technologies’ application for AquAdvantage Salmon.  The Draft Environmental Assessment (EA) and the preliminary Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) have already received a combined 31,458 comments online in the Federal Register docket.

"The draft EA and preliminary FONSI are one step in FDA’s evaluation of the AquAdvantage Salmon and do not indicate an approval of the application," FDA said when announcing the extension. "The National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) requires FDA and other federal agencies to perform such assessments whenever a major Federal action is taken."

"AquAdvantage Salmon are Atlantic salmon that have been genetically engineered to reach a measure of growth commonly used in salmon aquaculture more rapidly than other farmed Atlantic salmon. This is commonly linked to “reaching market size” (about 2-5 kilograms or about 5-12 pounds) in less time than other farmed salmon," FDA said in reference to the AquAdvantage's GE salmon.

If approved, the GE salmon may require no labeling to note its modification with the genes of other fish.

"Not only does this ignore our fundamental right to know what we are putting on our plates, it is simply bad for business, as many will avoid purchasing any salmon for fear it is genetically engineered," said Winonah Hauter, executive director of Food & Water Watch.

Consumers Union also weighed in on FDA's report, rebuking it as "flawed and inadequate."

"The FDA has found that the salmon is safe to eat.  However, we are deeply concerned that the potential of these fish to cause allergic reactions has not been adequately researched," said Michael Hansen PhD, senior scientist with Consumers Union. "FDA has allowed this fish to move forward based on tests of allergenicity of only six engineered fish—tests that actually did show an increase in allergy-causing potential."

“We are further concerned that consumers will in many cases not have any way to avoid this fish if they want to. While salmon is required by law to be labeled as to country of origin in supermarkets, this does not apply to fish markets or restaurants. While in supermarkets consumers could avoid fish from Panama, where this salmon will be grown, they will not have this ability when eating out or buying at a fish store,” Hansen said.

Visit EcoWatch’s GENETICALLY MODIFIED ORGANISM page for more related news on this topic.

——–

Tell the FDA to Deny Approval of GE Salmon:

 

The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists' "Doomsday Clock" — an estimate of how close humanity is to the apocalypse — remains at 100 seconds to zero for 2021. Eva Hambach / AFP / Getty Images

By Brett Wilkins

One hundred seconds to midnight. That's how close humanity is to the apocalypse, and it's as close as the world has ever been, according to Wednesday's annual announcement from the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, a group that has been running its "Doomsday Clock" since the early years of the nuclear age in 1947.

Read More Show Less

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

The 13th North Atlantic right whale calf with their mother off Wassaw Island, Georgia on Jan. 19, 2010. @GeorgiaWild, under NOAA permit #20556

North Atlantic right whales are in serious trouble, but there is hope. A total of 14 new calves of the extremely endangered species have been spotted this winter between Florida and North Carolina.

Read More Show Less

Trending

There are new lifestyle "medicines" that are free that doctors could be prescribing for all their patients. Marko Geber / Getty Images

By Yoram Vodovotz and Michael Parkinson

The majority of Americans are stressed, sleep-deprived and overweight and suffer from largely preventable lifestyle diseases such as heart disease, cancer, stroke and diabetes. Being overweight or obese contributes to the 50% of adults who suffer high blood pressure, 10% with diabetes and additional 35% with pre-diabetes. And the costs are unaffordable and growing. About 90% of the nearly $4 trillion Americans spend annually for health care in the U.S. is for chronic diseases and mental health conditions. But there are new lifestyle "medicines" that are free that doctors could be prescribing for all their patients.

Read More Show Less
Candles spell out, "Fight for 1 point 5" in front of the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin, Germany on Dec. 11, 2020, in reference to 1.5°C of Earth's warming. The event was organized by the Fridays for Future climate movement. Sean Gallup / Getty Images

Taking an unconventional approach to conduct the largest-ever poll on climate change, the United Nations' Development Program and the University of Oxford surveyed 1.2 million people across 50 countries from October to December of 2020 through ads distributed in mobile gaming apps.

Read More Show Less
A monarch butterfly is perched next to an adult caterpillar on a milkweed plant, the only plant the monarch will lay eggs on and the caterpillar will eat. Cathy Keifer / Getty Images

By Tara Lohan

Fall used to be the time when millions of monarch butterflies in North America would journey upwards of 2,000 miles to warmer winter habitat.

Read More Show Less