Abominable giant salmon coming soon to a fast food restaurant near you!

Did you hear the news this week? The FDA is close to approving genetically modified salmon. When I read about this for the first time earlier this week, I got a little knot in my stomach. I’ve always been opposed to GM foods but somehow, it felt a little easier to me to accept that man is messing with nature on a plant level. Once we begin to play god with higher order creatures…who knows what mayhem will ensue?

You see nature has a way of doing it’s own thing. Did you see Jurassic Park? The park owner hired geneticists who assured him that the cloned dinosaurs could not breed since they were sterile females. They ended up breeding anyway. I know what you are thinking: that was a fictional story. According to the article on GM salmon, the GM fish will be sterile females. The geneticists are doing this on purpose so that the salmon won’t be able to breed. If they get out, wild salmon stocks will be safe from contamination from these GM abominations. But, fish are strange creatures. They can change their sex from female to male if there are not enough males for breeding in a given population. It has also been documented that a shark held in captivity had a virgin birth. Hopefully fish cannot reverse sterilization.

As I was doing research for this post, I came across another scary article. According to this article, Russian scientists carried out an experiment where they fed GM foods to hamsters. The GM food was fed to each succeeding generation of hamster. Eventually, the fourth generation fed exclusively on a GM diet became sterile. Genetically modified foods are included in something like 75% of our processed foods now. This has been happening since the 1990’s. We should be on our second generation and going on our third generation of people who have been eating GM foods. This could get interesting pretty fast.

Now, I understand the urgency to get a salmon to market that will beef up to marketable size in fewer weeks than a conventional salmon would. Could you imagine how much money a McSalmon sandwich would make for McDonald’s? It would be huge for them! When beef cows and chickens were hybridized to grow to market size quickly, it revolutionized fast food. It made it possible to provide those billions of Big Macs and chicken McNuggets that are served every day. I just wish that corporate profits weren’t tied into the possibility that our health could be compromised in ways we never knew existed.

I am one angry little consumer and I am doing what I can. I try to vote with my dollars and I go to the FDA site to voice my disgust when they open things up to discussion. If I have no real say on the outcome of the decisions that the FDA makes on our behalf, then all I can wish for or hope for is that the FDA will finally help protect our interests just a bit and call for labeling of GM products. I just want to continue to at least think that I have a choice in regards to what I eat. Unless I am given the luxury of knowing what is in my food, I guess I will just remain afraid. Very afraid.



  1. Madam Chow said,

    June 29, 2010 at 11:12 am

    OH, for Pete’s sake, why don’t they leave us alone? On the one hand, they want to ban salt, and on the other, they’re messing with the genetic makeup of our food. ARGH!

    • Mimi said,

      June 29, 2010 at 11:22 am

      There is evidence that salt is bad for blood pressure (although from my reading on the subject, I’m beginning to think the salt/high blood pressure connection is really a salt and potassium inbalance) so they have a reason to attack salt in processed foods. Until someone has incontrovertable evidence that GM foods are doing something bad to us like robbing us of our fertility or causing the rise in autoimmunne problems such as peanut allergies and celiac disease, we get to be guinea pigs. I’m crabby about the whole thing because I feel that it is my right to opt out of being a guinea pig. Plus I love salmon. You don’t wanna mess with my salmon! 😀

      • Madam Chow said,

        July 8, 2010 at 5:18 pm

        Actually, the whole salt-is-bad for you band wagon is limited to a small percentage of the population who have salt sensitive high blood pressure. Like a family member of mine!

  2. Andreas said,

    June 29, 2010 at 11:21 am

    The Salmon of Doubt, indeed.
    See, Douglas Adams is a prophet speaking from the grave.
    Probably he was onto something with that 42-thing, too. 😉

    • Mimi said,

      June 29, 2010 at 11:36 am

      Maybe if the geneticists had access to the Salmon of Knowledge, they could tell us what’s about to happen. 😆

      Andreas, I sure do love you. You make me read Wikipedia. I just learned that Douglas Adams spent his last years living in my city. I wonder how I missed that, it must have been big news here when he passed away.

  3. drfugawe said,

    June 29, 2010 at 4:48 pm

    Hey, this ain’t all bad – if the Russians are right, then everyone who doesn’t give a damn will eat themselves into sterility and their line will disappear – then only smart people will be left – and a lot of uneaten salmon.

  4. ohiofarmgirl said,

    July 9, 2010 at 3:04 pm

    auaughghhhhhhhh!! you know, as a former Seattlite I cant even get myself to eat farm raised salmon… now I have to worry about franken-fish!??!??!


    did i tell you about how i went to a formerly reputable fish house and they offered me “atlantic” salmon from british columbia?? this is a crazy world… we oughta sell tickets.

  5. Elizabeth said,

    July 11, 2010 at 2:13 pm

    I too am afraid. Very afraid.

    I just recently listened to Dan Barber’s lecture “How I fell in love with a fish” on TED.com He talks about farmed fish that was fed CHICKEN pellets. What kind of fish eat chicken??!

    Hell in a hand-basket. That’s where we’re heading.

  6. July 15, 2010 at 8:15 am

    […] from. We do know it was farmed though. And after reading Mimi’s (Delectable Tidbits) article Abominable giant salmon coming soon to a fast food restaurant near you, I’m afraid… or as Mimi says, I’m very […]

  7. September 21, 2010 at 12:41 pm

    […] The FDA is weighing in on whether they will require labeling of genetically modified salmon. […]

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