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USDA gives half million in taxpayer dollars to AquaBounty to promote GM salmon

Saturday, November 05, 2011 by: Ethan A. Huff, staff writer
Tags: AquaBounty, GM salmon, health news

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(NaturalNews) Biotechnology company AquaBounty has had quite a bit of trouble getting quick regulatory approval for its genetically-modified (GM) salmon, called AquAdvantage, because the "frankenfish" is not always sterile as claimed and could spread its corrupted genes into the wild. So in order to help move things along, the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) has awarded the company nearly $500,000 in taxpayer funds to conduct research on how to fully sterilize the fish, according to Grist.

Neither the USDA nor the FDA seem to care that the public remains overwhelmingly opposed to AquaBounty's GM salmon regardless of whether or not it is sterile. Not only do consumers not want to eat the fake fish, which has been shown to be highly allergenic, but they also most certainly do not want their hard-earned cash handed over to AquaBounty on a silver platter to ensure that the unwanted salmon eventually makes it to grocery store shelves (http://www.naturalnews.com/GM_salmon.html).

But this is exactly what the USDA has done. While AquaBounty's president and CEO Ronald L. Stotish sneers at those who rightfully oppose his company's intention to force dangerous GM salmon into the food supply against the will of the people, the USDA is busy giving the company the people's money. And eventually, this generous donation may result in AquAdvantage getting full approval, rather than plunging into oblivion as it was on course to do.

In other words, American taxpayers are now subsidizing the research and development that AquaBounty itself cannot afford to undertake. The company, after all, has already lost $2.8 million and three board members since its inception, as it has failed to produce a safe product that appeals to, well, anyone. So now the government is artificially propping up the failing company with a cash infusion to ensure that AquAdvantage eventually makes its way to market.

The US government, of course, has absolutely no business using taxpayer dollars to fund the development of a GM fish that nobody in the public wants to see released, and definitely does not want to consume. AquaBounty was well on its way to extinction, as it should have been, until the nation's corrupt regulatory bodies decided to intervene and change its course.

Commenting on the FDA's potential approval of the GM salmon, regardless of whether or not a sterile version is developed, Colin O'Neil, regulatory policy analyst for the Center for Food Safety, said it best. Grist quotes him as saying that it is "reckless for the FDA to approve genetically engineered salmon given the large number of environmental, human health, animal welfare and economic risks that have been raised by scientists, members of Congress and members of the FDA's own Advisory Committee."

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