A Very, Very Dangerous Precedent: FDA Approves Genetically-Engineered Salmon

Just a few hours ago, the FDA declared that GE-salmon is as safe to eat as non-GE salmon and has given its approval for it to be sold to consumers.

Despite the fact that:

– Over 400,000 comments were submitted demanding that genetically-engineered salmon be rejected.

– More than 300 environmental, consumer, health and animal welfare organizations, salmon and fishing groups and associations, food companies, chefs, and restaurants filed joint statements with the FDA opposing approval.

– More than 40 members of the U.S. Congress have repeatedly urged the FDA to conduct more rigorous reviews of environmental and health safety, and halt any approval process until concerns over risks, transparency and oversight have been fully satisfied.

……….the FDA refused to listen to consumer opinion and environmental concerns, and it completely placated the well-funded biotech industry.

Not only is this the first GE-fish approved, but it is the first GE-animal approved for human consumption. (This “FrankenFish” is injected with a gene from the Pacific Chinook salmon and can reach adult size in 16 to 18 months instead of 30 months for normal Atlantic salmon.) Read more »

TAKE ACTION: Organic Fish May Be Coming Soon and it is a Horrible Idea

Right now in the U.S., there is no such thing as USDA certified organic fish. Why?

Because organic standards for fish have never been passed.

That may soon change, however. The USDA is getting close to finalizing organic aquaculture production regulations, based upon recommendations from the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB).

And what is being proposed — including allowing ocean-based fish farms and the use of wild fish, meal or oil — is a horrible idea. Not only will these standards harm the ocean’s ecosystem, but they will impact the integrity of the organic seal.

In an excellent report called Like Water and Oil: Ocean-Based Fish Farming and Organic Don’t Mix, the Center for Food Safety (CFS) outlines the key reasons why the proposed regulations are flawed and why ocean-based farms are completely incompatible with organic standards. Read more »

Wenonah Hauter, Executive Director of Food & Water Watch, on Fixing Our Food System and Foodopoly

Having been entrenched in the organic food sector for the last few years, I have come to gain a tremendous appreciation for the non-profits that play such a vital role in protecting both our industry and the American consumer.

And without a question, one of these phenomenal non-profits is Food & Water Watch.

Recently, I caught up with the Executive Director of Food & Water Watch, Wenonah Hauter, someone who worked for Ralph Nader for 10 years, and we spoke about many different topics – food policy in the U.S., what exactly her organization does and where it operates, and how citizens must get involved.

We also discussed her excellent new book, Foodopoly: The Battle Over the Future of Food and Farming in America.

If you’re interested in learning about what is truly going on in our food system and how we can fix it, I strongly suggest that you read Foodopoly. It can be purchased online by clicking HERE.

(Several of the photos used in the video are courtesy of Food & Water Watch.)

Read more »

Approval of Genetically-Engineered Salmon Appears Imminent, Tell the FDA “No”

For several years, the FDA has been considering whether to approve genetically-engineered salmon and it just released (right before a major holiday) an Environmental Assessment as to whether it is safe or not.

(If you are not familiar with this whole genetically-engineered salmon issue, please see the video at the bottom of this post which gives a great explanation.)

Continuing the Obama administration’s pandering to the biotech industry, the Environmental Assessment (EA) said GE-salmon is safe and poses no real risks, and this report paves the way for approval in 2013.

Needless to say, this is horrible news.

The public backlash against this “FrankenFish” has been very clear, yet it has fallen on completely deaf ears.

– Over 400,000 comments were submitted demanding that this GE-salmon be rejected.

– More than 300 environmental, consumer, health and animal welfare organizations, salmon and fishing groups and associations, food companies, chefs, and restaurants filed joint statements with FDA opposing approval. Read more »

Nuclear Radiation from Fukushima is Found in Bluefin Tuna Near California

This has not been a particularly good few days for fish. Or for the citizens of our planet, for that matter.

Last week, the Senate gave into pressure from the biotech industry and voted that further environmental testing on the safety of genetically-engineered salmon is not necessary.

(In case you are new to this whole GE-salmon issue, here is an excellent video about it.)

Our government seems incredibly intent on making sure that this horrible technology gets into the environment and ruins the ocean’s ecosystem forever. It even went so far as to give the company that owns this technology, AquaBounty, a $500,000 grant last fall as it teetered on the brink of bankruptcy. Read more »

Food & Water Watch Unveils its New Smart Seafood Guide and “Dirty Dozen of Fish”


Since I don’t eat fish myself nor is there such a thing as USDA certified organic fish (national organic standards for fish have not yet been approved), I don’t pay too much attention to this food group.

This does not mean, however, I don’t get asked questions about fish. I do, quite a bit.

So, for the people who want to know what is the best fish to eat, what fish should they avoid, what fish have the most contaminants, and what are the least sustainable fish, our good friends at the Food & Water Watch have just released their 2012 Smart Seafood Guide.

The Smart Seafood Guide gives an excellent analysis on over 100 different fish, provides regional guides, and offers helpful suggestions so that consumers can make the healthiest and most sustainable choices possible. Read more »

Infected Salmon Eggs are Found in the Proposed GE-Salmon — Safety and Credibility are Now Major Issues

I have been writing about the genetically-engineered salmon issue for quite a while now, and last week I put up a story about how Congress held hearings for the first-time ever about this FrankenFish.

As I mentioned in the post, it was a great step in raising awareness of this abhorrent technology and hopefully it will never get approved.

AquaBounty, the company that is trying to receive FDA approval for genetically-engineered salmon, has been telling the public that this “fish” is safe – safe for humans and safe for the environment, both of which is completely absurd in my opinion.

Now we have documentation that calls into serious question the credibility of AquaBounty and its willingness to tell the truth.

According to recently released documents (PDF file), AquaBounty’s research site in Canada was contaminated with a new strain of Infectious Salmon Anaemia (ISA), the deadly fish flu that is devastating fish stocks around the globe. Read more »