What Hollywood Needs to Know About GE Salmon

Screen Shot 2015-12-03 at 3.21.45 PMOn November 19th, the FDA approved the sale of genetically engineered (GE) salmon developed by AquaBounty. This is the first genetically engineered animal intended for human consumption ever approved by U.S. regulators. This decision threatens the very survival of our native salmon populations, and could have unknown health impacts on humans.

 

What you need to know:

 

FDA ignored millions of Americans and more than 40 members of Congress who have expressed vocal opposition

Approximately 2 million people filed public comments with the FDA in opposition to this action, the largest number of comments the FDA has ever received on an action. With its approval, FDA also neglected the concerns of more than more than 40 members of Congress and over 300 environmental, consumer, health and animal welfare organizations, salmon and fishing groups and associations, food companies, chefs and restaurants.

GE salmon poses a risk to wild species

Imagine a world where GE salmon take over our oceans, rivers, and streams. These fast-growing manufactured fish would outcompete and wipeout our treasured wild salmon stocks, currently on the brink of extinction. Salmon fishing communities would be devastated and our marine environment would be forever altered. Unfortunately, FDA’s approval of GE salmon means this scenario could soon be reality. To make matters worse, the human health impacts of eating GE fish are completely unknown.

AquaBounty’s experimental GE AquaAdvantage® salmon are currently being raised in Panama

Environmental groups in Canada have sued that country’s government for allowing the GE salmon eggs to be produced there, potentially putting ecosystems and species such as wild salmon at risk.

Once on the shelves, we may not be able to avoid the fish

On the heels of FDA’s approval of GMO salmon, the third largest retailer in the U.S., Costco Wholesale, has made a public commitment to not sell GMO salmon. Costco joins more than 60 other supermarket chainsincluding Kroger, Safeway, Trader Joe’s, Target, and Whole Foods, now totaling more than 9,500 stores nationwide, in making a commitment to not sell GMO salmon. Red Lobster also told the Dallas Morning News that it would not sell GMO salmon. While dozens of supermarkets, seafood companies and restaurants have vowed not to sell the GE fish, lack of labeling laws mean that average consumers will not have a choice.

Our parent organization the Center for Food Safety (CFS) is ready to fight back and sue the FDA, challenging its approval of these untested, unlabeled, and unwanted GE salmon. If you feel called, please support our lawsuit and advocacy work with Center for Food Safety to prevent GE salmon from invading our waters. 

In Gratitude,
Kaiulani Kimbrell & the Hollywood Food Guild Team

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