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Genetically Engineered Salmon

The Massachusetts company Aqua Bounty has created genetically modified salmon that could find their ways onto supermarket shelves in a matter of two to three years.  The salmon are produced from a gene from the Atlantic salmon, chinook breed as well as a gene from a fish called an ocean pout, which resembles an eel.

Salmon has been called the "perfect" food for the rich proteins and fats it contains which are very good for our health.  So far the Food and Drug Administration has approved the salmon from Aqua Bounty but stress that more tests are required.

Critics believe that the FDA has relied on too small a sample of fish to make a meaningful decision on this matter.  There are many other concerns being voiced about this fish including the threat of alergies as well as the potential for these "super" salmon, who produce growth hormone year around instead of only during portions of the year, to escape into the wild and mix with natural salmon, potentially replacing whole species.

Fisherman are also threatened by this development, because they are not needed to produce this new fish.  If genetically engineered salmon become commonplace it will naturally drive down the price of salmon and it is unknown what the long term health risks will be.  If the fish are safe and the price comes down, more folks will eat salmon which could result in healthier diets for more people.

One thing is certain, this story if far from over and its ramifications will have a long-lasting impact on our society.