Organic Consumers Association

Campaigning for health, justice, sustainability, peace, and democracy

What the FDA Doesn't Want You to Know About GE Salmon

One of the arguments against expanding the FDA's powers over food safety is that the agency has repeatedly shown an unwillingness to enforce existing laws and to regulate aggressively in the face of corporate lobbying.

Unfortunately, we now have more evidence that the FDA may indeed be a bad-faith regulator.

The Center for Food Safety has unearthed convincing evidence that the FDA is attempting to freeze out marine and fisheries experts from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in its rush to approve biotech company AquaBounty's genetically modified salmon for human consumption.

According to documents obtained by the consumer group via a Freedom of Information Act request, the FDA has held only "preliminary" discussions with these agencies regarding AquaBounty's product and has not allowed government scientists to review some of the company's "confidential" data. According to an email sent between staffers at Fish and Wildlife and NOAA, they've been kept out of the loop for some time:

 Shortly after the Atlantic salmon was listed as endangered, several of us from USFWS and NMFS spent 2 days down in Maryland meeting with AquaBounty and FDA about development of genetically modified salmon and discussion around the need for FDA to engage in Section 7 consultation with the Services. We never heard a peep out of FDA or AquaBounty after that.

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