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Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Frankenfish

Just in time for Halloween: Genetically modified salmon are becoming the topic of conversation. We’re now questioning safety, morality, and taste. Salmon is my favorite fish. It brings back childhood memories of sitting on the river and fishing with my dad. And when I found out it was healthy I couldn’t have been happier. Lately, the world’s supply of salmon has been dwindling, threatening fish houses and sushi restaurants alike.

Aqua Bounty is the company that has been developing genetically modified Salmon that grow twice as fast. And it’s said that this mix-and-match of genetics wouldn’t be labeled differently in stores. The only way I could go for that is if they tasted the same – exactly the same. Which, let’s be real, isn’t be possible. A wild salmon that was born and raised in the rugged Alaskan terrain is going to have more of a kick than any test-tube salmon baby. People are also concerned about potential allergens and the possibility of these “Frankenfish” getting out into the wild and wreaking terror on the wild salmon population.

It’s one thing to mess with our crops, but putting the meat we eat in the hands of scientists is a little scary. I think as long as this “new salmon” is separated from the real salmon I’ll accept it (but I still won’t eat it). How much worse can it be from the hormone filled and potentially diseased meat that already tries to creep onto our plates?

What’s next? An engineered pig that will produce less harmful phosphorus waste? NooOo - not my bacon!


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2 comments:

  1. I feel like genetic modification has such great potential though! If a fish grows twice as fast, presumably eating a similar amount of food, we can bring meat to more people. Or those pigs that could reduce phosphorus emissions...that would help keep water clearer by slowing the growth of algae blooms. Maybe genetic modifications will lead to the zombie apocalypse, but I'm going to take my chances and hope that some good can some from GMO.

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  2. There are definitely some great benefits that GM can bring. If it's monitored well and safe for us it does beat the possibility of never having Salmon again. Though if it turns out to really sacrifice taste, maybe they can tamper the genes until that's perfect too.

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