October 27, 2016

Costco, Red Lobster Will Not Sell GMO Salmon

The FDA approved AquaBounty's GMO salmon this week, after months and years of contentious opposition from consumer advocate and food safety groups. This is the first genetically engineered animal to be sold for food in the United States. The problems with this product range from "lost" eggs and fish to violation of environmental regulations and missing permits. But this week the third largest retailer in the U.S., Costco Wholesale, announced that it will not sell the fish, according to Center for Food Safety. They join more than 60 other supermarket chains, including Kroger, Safeway, Trader Joe's, and Whole Foods that will not sell the GMO salmon. Red Lobster last week also rejected the salmon. Walmart and Public are the largest retail chains that have not rejected the salmon. Dana … [Read more...]

Food & Water Watch Wants SEC To Reject GMO Salmon Stock Filings

Food & Water Watch has called on the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) to reject the stock registration filings of AquaBounty Technologies (ABTX), the maker of genetically engineered salmon, based on "misleading and erroneous claims the company is making in its attempt to join the NASDAQ stock exchange." The letter asks the SEC to make AquaBounty revise their document, since new scientific evidence allegedly shows GMO salmon do not grow as quickly as AquaBounty claims, and that the fish experience unique diseases. The letter was sent to Sean McKessy, Chief of the Office of the Whistleblower at the SEC. It claims that "omissions, errors, and false statements [were] found in Form 10 regulatory findings submitted to the SEC by AquaBounty Technologies." Wenonah Hauter, executive … [Read more...]

Canadian Risk Assessment Finds GMO Salmon Disease Susceptible

The Center for Food Safety has released information about a risk assessment conducted in Canada that finds GMO salmon are susceptible to disease. The environmental review of AquaBounty Technologies' GE salmon reveals that the Canadian government disagrees with the FDA on key questions about the safety and performance of the salmon. Food & Water Watch, Center for Food Safety, Friends of the Earth, and Consumers Union are calling on the FDA to terminate its ongoing review of GE salmon. The risk assessment finds that GE salmon are more susceptible to a type of disease-causing bacteria than non-GE domesticated salmon. That indicates that the fish will have unique health problems. It also raises concerns about the public health that the FDA has not considered. The report also states … [Read more...]

Documents Show Aquabounty’s Management Problems

Food & Water Watch and Center for Food Safety have again asked the FDA to deny AquaBounty Technologies' application for genetically engineered salmon. New evidence from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission shows that the company previously handed over responsibility for most safety at its Panamanian facility - including regulatory compliance - to an independent contractor. >In 2013, the company handed over management of its facility in Panama to an independent grower who died this summer, leaving the facility in a "precarious state" according to FOod & Water WAtch. Executive Director Wenonah Hauter said in a statement, "at times, even AquaBounty doesn't seem to know what's happening in Panama. The horrendous environmental record of AquaBounty, which includes a security … [Read more...]

AquaBounty Fined for Violations on GE Salmon

Officials in Panama have fined AquaBounty Technologies $9,500, stating the facility is operating in violation of environmental regulations as it experiments with genetically engineered (GE) salmon.  Food safety advocates such as Center for Food Safety and Friends of the Earth have ask the FDA to terminate its regulatory review of AquaBounty's facility and deny the company's application to sell the engineered fish in the U.S. Wenonah Hauter, executive director of Food & Water Watch said, "FDA has always assured the public that it is checking, monitoring, and regulating AquaBounty's production platform to ensure the company can mitigate the well-documented environmental impacts of escaped GE salmon. We now know that AquaBounty is unwilling or unable to follow basic rules and … [Read more...]

Food & Water Watch Asks SEC to Stop GMO Salmon Misinformation

Food & Water Watch is asking the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the FDA to stop AquaBounty's "campaign of misinformation" on its GMO salmon. That agency states there is misleading information in AquaBounty Technologies' newest regulatory filings with the SEC, including that the genetically engineered salmon will not require a label. The FDA has not made a decision about whether or not the product will need to be labeled. The letter from Food & Water Watch states that "AquaBounty has not sufficiently corrected the vast majority of the problems that we originally identified [in the first complaint]. Potential investors remain at risk because of the missing or misrepresentative disclosures and the untrue statement." There is strong consumer opposition to … [Read more...]

Food & Water Watch Prods SEC About Aquabounty Risks

Food & Water Watch is asking the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) to make AquaBounty Technologies, the producer of genetically engineered salmon, tell investors about the risks of its product. Aquabounty's SEC filing "misrepresents the market barriers, regulatory hurdles, and financial prospects facing its sole product, GE salmon," according to the agency. Executive Director Wenonah Hauter said in a statement, "the SEC needs to ensure that investors are able to distinguish between what AquaBounty says in its disclosures and the facts on the ground. Aquabounty's SEC filing confirms a long history of misrepresentation and missing transparency. Even the FDA was recently compelled to rein in AquaBounty for falsely stating that FDA will not require GE salmon to be … [Read more...]

Senate Amendment Requires Mandatory Labeling of GE Salmon

An amendment to the FY 2015 Agriculture Appropriations bill introduced passed in the Senate Appropriations Committee last week. It would require labeling of genetically engineered (GE) salmon. Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) is the originator of the amendment, and Senator Mark Begich (D-AK) is the sponsor. This is the second year the Committee has passed a GE fish labeling amendment. Colin O'Neil, director of government affairs for Center for Food Safety said in a statement, "the food movement scored another major win today with the passage of Senator Murkowski's amendment to require the labeling of genetically engineered salmon. While some Members of Congress are peddling corporate-backed legislation to keep consumers in the dark, today's vote is an indicator that support for labeling is … [Read more...]

FDA Weakens Public Process on GMO Animals

Food & Water Watch is criticizing the FDA for weakening the public process on approval of GMO animals. The agency is disbanding the Veterinary Medicine Advisory Committee (VMAC), which peer reviews FDA's risk analysis of genetically modified animals. The scientists on that committee were very critical of AquaBounty's GMO salmon, telling the FDA there was not sufficiency science to demonstrate animal safety. The government claims that the review process is too costly. But Food & Water Watch filed a records request and discovered that the agency spent zero dollars in 2013 maintaining the committee, which included all administrative and labor costs. The FDA is close to approving the GMO salmon, despite many problems with growing facilities and opposition from consumer and food … [Read more...]

Kroger, Safeway Pledge No Genetically Engineered Salmon

Kroger and Safeway, two of the nation's largest grocery store chains, have joined the growing list of companies pledging not to carry genetically engineered (GE) salmon if it receives approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), according to consumer group Friends of the Earth.  Kroger, with almost 2,500 stores nationwide, and Safeway, which operates almost 1,500 stores, push the total number of grocery stores saying no to GE salmon to 9,000. “By making commitments to not sell genetically engineered salmon, Kroger and Safeway have joined the large number of grocery chains, from Trader Joe’s to Target, that have wisely chosen to listen to the majority of consumers who do not want to eat genetically engineered fish,” said Dana Perls, food and technology policy campaigner … [Read more...]

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