Restaurant giant Aramark joins 85 others in saying no to genetically modified salmon

Genetically modified (GM) salmon has been in the works for decades. And his arrival is fast approaching.

How fast? Is March early enough for you? This is the estimated time given by AquaBounty, a Massachusetts-based biotechnology company that developed Salmon AquAdvantage – a genetically modified fish. AquaBounty said The counter he expects to harvest the salmon at a facility in Indiana in March and release it to market soon after.

The AquaBounty website states that “AquaBounty’s innovative land-based farms, combined with its expertise in genetic engineering, are the answers to a rapidly growing global demand for high-quality seafood. “

But who will buy GM salmon? Despite the fact that AquAdvantage salmon is not even ready to be sold, there is a lot of opposition, The meter is reporting.

Earlier this month, a coalition of environmentalists and local organizers announced that they had successfully put pressure on Aramark, one of America’s largest restaurant companies, to agree not to sell GM salmon if and when it becomes available in the United States.

Aramark operates cafeterias and food services in schools, universities, hospitals, prisons and office buildings across the country – even Heinz Field in Pittsburgh. He has now joined 85 grocery chains, seafood companies, restaurants and food service companies that have pledged not to sell GM salmon since 2013, according to Friends of the Earth, a nonprofit environmental advocacy group.

Aramark’s world headquarters is seen in Philadelphia on August 8, 2006. (AP Photo / Matt Rourke)ASSOCIATED PRESS

To find out about the many companies that have made a commitment not to sell GM salmon, visit The Friends of the Earth website. There are a number of national and regional food retailers, seafood companies, restaurants and large food service companies.

Some names recognized in central Pennsylvania include Aldi, Costco, Trader Joe’s, Walmart, Whole foods and red lobster.

“Avoiding potential impacts on wild salmon populations and indigenous communities, whose livelihoods are deeply intertwined and often dependent on this vital resource, is at the heart of our company’s commitment to positively impact people. and the planet, ”a company policy brief from Aramark read.

Created in 1989, genetically engineered fish are genetically engineered to grow twice as fast as conventionally farmed salmon. It has been approved as safe for consumption by the FDA in 2015 and an import ban was lifted by the FDA in 2019.

In 2016, Friends of the Earth, with environmentalists, wild salmon fishermen and the Quinault Indian Nation, has filed a lawsuit against the FDA to revoke the approval permanently.

Some of the companies that have pledged not to sell salmon sell foods made with genetically modified ingredients, such as corn and soy derivatives. But Jane Kolodinsky, an economist at the University of Vermont, said those retailers likely thought this product was different.

The counter was said by Kolodinsky:

“The strong feelings that some consumers have about the genetic modification of plants are exacerbated in animals. A psychological study conducted in 2016 with 860 people showed that consumers were more “disgusted” by genetically modified tuna than by a tomato. Those who say they are opposed to the use of GMOs in crop production are “strongly opposed” to modifying animals. ”

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