Fish Radi0
April 25, 2013

Frankenfish! Credit:


 This is Fish Radio. I’m Laine Welch – Countdown to Frankenfish. I’ll tell you more after this –

Frankenfish, last day to comment is Friday

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 Think fish on Friday!  April 26th is the last day to comment on the FDA’s plans to approve genetically modified salmon.   The so called Frankenfish would be the first man made animal approved for human consumption. The tweaked Atlantic salmon contains a Chinook gene that makes it  grow up to three times faster than normal. The Food and Drug Administration concluded last year that the fish will not have any significant impacts on the human environment, and is unlikely to harm wild fish. 

 Cut; It’s been portrayed in the media as a bizarre concoction that is somehow unnatural. But the fact of the matter is that it reflects a change of less than one ten thousandth of one percent of the entire genetic material of the fish. That is less change than one normally sees, for instance, in normal sexual mating. 4

 Ronald Stotish is president of Massachusetts-based Aqua Bounty, the GM salmon creator.  

 Cut: We understand the sensitivity of the fishermen and the industry in Alaska. However, our product we believe does not represent a threat to them because it will simply displace an imported product that is coming in from offshore at the present time.  2

  The fish will be grown out primarily in Panama.    Alaska’s delegation has fought hard to derail the approval. Senator Lisa Murkowski is critical of the FDA for what she calls ignoring the public.   

 Cut:  This is especially troubling as the agency is ignoring the opposition of salmon and fishing groups as well as more than 3000 consumer and health organizations. I just don’t believe these fish should be approved.

 Because the changeling process is categorized under ‘veterinary procedures,’ no labels will be required to be truthful to consumers about what they are buying.   So far the FDA has gotten nearly 37,000 individual comments and thousands more from groups, running 100 to one against approval. Senator Mark Begich –

 Cut: We would encourage people to make comments on this issue. I think the more comments they get on the official record may slow them down or prevent them from moving forward. But can they move forward even with so much opposition by so many diverse groups?  The sad answer to this is probably.   

 Find a link to FDA comments at our Home Page under Featured Fish Links

 Fish Radio is also brought to you by Ocean Beauty Seafoods, an Alaska corporation proudly supporting Alaska’s coastal communities and the Alaskans who depend on fishing for their livelihoods and culture.    In Kodiak, I’m Laine Welch.


Comments can be sent to  Docket No. FDA-2011-N-0899.