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October 25, 2014

Frankenfish Redemption! (PHOTOS)

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The good news is there’s actually an issue that Alaskans agree on – Red ones, Blue ones, and Tea-colored ones. And it is this: Tinkering with the genetic code of life, creating an animal that has never existed in nature, not telling people what it is, and selling it in direct competition with Alaska’s wild salmon is a really, really bad idea.

We had the opportunity to send our comments to the FDA, to tell them not to allow this unidentified, unlabeled, genetically-engineered Atlantic-Pacific-salmon-eel-hybrid on our shelves, or in our bodies.

But you forgot. The deadline came and went, and now you’re kicking yourself. The realization hit you in the face like a wet fish. And now… it’s too late.

Or so you thought!

The comment period has been extended until April 26th! You are redeemed!

To tell the FDA what you think, click here —-> www.regulations.gov. Then, search for “GE salmon.” Click “Com­ment Now” to sub­mit your comments on the link that says:

“Draft Environmental Assessment and Preliminary Finding of No Significant Impact Concerning a Genetically Engineered Atlantic Salmon; Extension of Comment Period”

When we last talked about the nefarious Frankenfish, they were readying for a rally in Sitka, to coordinate with other rallies across the country.

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Ray Friedlander of the Sitka Conservation Society was our Mudflats boots on the ground at the rally, and wrote about his association with local Sitka activist Paul Rioux.

For Paul, organizing a rally that would protest genetically engineered salmon was one of those ways to stand up. “I saw that there were rallies going on in other parts of the country, and I decided that it would be nice to do one here,” Paul said. Through Paul’s actions, over 130 people came to the rally, which was then publicized by Senator Murkowski, Senator Begich, and Representative Jonathan Kreiss-Tomkins. Four days after the event, the Food and Drug Administration announced they were going to extend the period to comment on genetically engineered salmon by 60 days, with the new date being April 26th, 2013. I’m certain that Sitka’s activism helped spur this extension.

To make this happen, we started small. We gained support from fishing organizations like the Alaska Longline Fishermen’s Association (ALFA) and the Alaska Troller’s Association (ATA), who passed the message on to their members; we held sign-making parties at the SCS office, Blatchley Middle School, and Ventures; flyers were created, posted, and handed out, featuring both information on the rally and how to submit a comment to the FDA opposing genetically engineered salmon; Raven Radio had us on their Morning Interview, where myself, Paul, and David Wilcox, a Blatchley middle school student running across the country in protest of genetically modified organisms (GMOs), discussed the negative impacts of genetically engineered salmon; both the Mudflats blog and Fish Radio with Laine Welch hosted information on the rally to raise awareness to their subscribers that the FDA was considering approving genetically engineered salmon; and the day of the event, the local news station, the Sitka Sentinel, and Raven Radiocame out to document the event, which made it on the front page of the paper. Days after the rally, Sitka’s Assembly also approved, on a 7-0 vote, a resolution stating the city’s opposition to frankenfish.

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House Joint Resolution 5 was also recently introduced on the Senate Floor in Juneau. The resolution opposes the FDA’s preliminary finding related to genetically engineered salmon and opposes the production of genetically engineered salmon. HJR 5 has been referred to the Resources Committee. To listen to the first half of the session, click here.

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Comments

comments

Comments
19 Responses to “Frankenfish Redemption! (PHOTOS)”
  1. Corey says:

    I see four different items in the search results that seem relevant to this. Which one do I comment on? Or do I copy and paste on all four?

  2. AKjah says:

    I cannot wait to eat something that is not what it is supposed to be. I wonder if they have the ads yet for the Mc Frankinfishwich. And supersize my GMO fries cooked in GMO oil and a softdrink made from GMOcorn base. What could go wrong.

  3. fishingmamma says:

    Take a perfect food, wild salmon, a heart-healthy. low-fat low-cost protein food that is widely available in many forms (canned, smoked, frozen, fresh) and splice in genes designed to make the fish grow at an accelerated rate. Then feed the resulting product to humans before havning any earthly idea what effect that will have on the human organism. Increased cancer? Rapidly-growing cancer cells? human growth hormones that are out of control?

    What could possibly go wrong?

    My family relies on our yearly catch of red salmon for the major portion of the protein in our diets. I may have to give up fish and go vegan, just to be sure we do not have this new poison in our food.

  4. AKMagpie says:

    I am curious, who profits with frankenfish? Where is the money behind the push to genetically modify fish? Part of the story is missing, but it may be that I am not informed enough on the subject. Seems crazy to me.

    • Forty Watt says:

      This might of interest in more general terms – Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs): Transgenic Crops and Recombinant DNA Technology – http://www.nature.com/scitable/topicpage/genetically-modified-organisms-gmos-transgenic-crops-and-732

      “Many industries stand to benefit from additional GMO research. For instance, a number of microorganisms are being considered as future clean fuel producers and biodegraders. In addition, genetically modified plants may someday be used to produce recombinant vaccines. In fact, the concept of an oral vaccine expressed in plants (fruits and vegetables) for direct consumption by individuals is being examined as a possible solution to the spread of disease in underdeveloped countries, one that would greatly reduce the costs associated with conducting large-scale vaccination campaigns. Work is currently underway to develop plant-derived vaccine candidates in potatoes and lettuce for hepatitis B virus (HBV), enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC), and Norwalk virus. Scientists are also looking into the production of other commercially valuable proteins in plants, such as spider silk protein and polymers that are used in surgery or tissue replacement (Ma et al., 2003). Genetically modified animals have even been used to grow transplant tissues and human transplant organs, a concept called xenotransplantation. The rich variety of uses for GMOs provides a number of valuable benefits to humans, but many people also worry about potential risks.”

    • Forty Watt says:

      The AquAdvantage Salmon Controversy – A Tale of Aquaculture, Genetically Engineered Fish and Regulatory Uncertainty

      http://dash.harvard.edu/bitstream/handle/1/8789564/Goubau_Alain-_Food_%26amp__Drug_Law_-_Final_Paper_-_AquAdvantage_Salmon%5B1%5D.pdf?sequence=1 (Note: This opens a PDF)

      This paper lays out the controversy around the potentially imminent commercialization of the first genetically engineered animal for human food consumption in the United States. it is long and gives the history and discusses research, methods, issues, concerns and who profits.

      Interestingly, Aquabounty is using the same DNA technology to develop equivalent tilapia and trout versions of its fast growing fish.

      • Alaska Pi says:

        Is a very good one -in many ways.
        Would argue that it skimps on certain issues in the beginning as regards over fishing but rest is pretty darn good.
        Thanks!

      • mike from iowa says:

        Tilapia are considered a “safe” fish to eat as they do not accumulate heavy metals in their fatty tissues. However,let’s be honest,they do eat detritus and in the natural world they also eat hippo poop and other nutrient rich goodies. Bon appetit or whatever the French feel qualified to say.Alaska Pi for Master(or equivalent) of the Universe.

  5. John says:

    Given the change to the cruise ship dumping rules, I would consider eating frankenfish if they could add a gene to make it resistant to sewage. I can see the TV commercial now. Salmon swimming through waste water off the coast of Alaska. Four fish are pulled up in a filthy net. Three of the fish are coated with s**t. The fourth fish comes out bright and clean. The announcer says “Eating Alaska seafood? Be sure to eat the FrankenSalmon.”

    • Alaska Pi says:

      I worry a lot less about treated fecal matter than ammonia, copper, zinc, and nickel accumulating over time.
      Frankenfish is a flat out scam , based on a plan to cash in on the American market for seafood.

  6. Mo says:

    Considering the size of the town of Sitka, that’s a pretty impressive rally.

  7. Zyxomma says:

    My comment went to the FDA months ago. I haven’t eaten fish in decades, but the safety and integrity of (what’s left of) our food supply could not be more important.

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