More meat and fish from genetically engineered animals could be coming to your dinner plate.
Last November, the Food and Drug Administration issued a bombshell announcement, for the first time approving genetically engineered salmon. The fish, produced by AquaBounty, have been genetically engineered to grow to market size in just 18 months, rather than the customary three years.
The FDA issued voluntary labeling guidance but so far, the agency is not requiring fish vendors to inform shoppers if their salmon is a GMO variety.
What’s next? GMO bacon? Maybe.
The FDA reports that pigs are being bred so that their meat will have increased levels of omega-3 fatty acids.
GMO lobster? It could happen.
Food scientists have successfully transplanted genes into crayfish. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, this technique “could be applied some day to shrimp and other crustaceans such as crabs and lobster to improve characteristics like color, taste, growth rate, size, and disease resistance, for aquaculture
Paradoxically, as genetic engineering technology spreads, lawmakers are working hard to limit consumers’ rights to know what’s in their food. A bill we call the DARK Act, introduced Feb. 19 by Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.), would make GMO labeling strictly voluntary for companies and would prevent states from imposing any labeling requirements. It could even make it harder for companies to voluntarily disclose GMOs.
What’s more, the DARK Act would move GMO labeling jurisdiction from the FDA to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
If the DARK Act passes, GMO bacon and GMO lobster could show up on your dinner plate, and no one will have to tell you about it.