GM apples approved in US
TheFederation des producteurs de pommes du Quebec (FPPQ) is not happy that the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has just approved the growing of two varieties of genetically modified apples: Arctic Granny and Arctic Golden. These genetically modified varieties, which should come to the American market in five years, were actually developed at a British Colombian company, Okanagan Specialty Fruits Inc. Modified from Granny Smith and Golden Delicious apples, they do not turn brown, considered an advantage for apple transforming operations. Unlike most GM foods that have added genes, these GM apples have had a gene deleted so they would produce very little of the enzyme that turns apples brown.
The FPPQ issued a press release after the apples were approved last week, stating “The FPPQ still opposes genetically modified apples coming to the market because they believe that consumers are distrustful of GM foods and that could have a negative impact on the consumption and trade of apples in Canada.” According to a recent poll, 69% of Canadian respondents were against the approval of a genetically modified apple by the Canadian government and 91% want the Canadian government to make the labeling of GM foods mandatory.
“You have to look at the benefits and the risks but what strikes me as strange is that we already have an apple that doesn’t brown, the Cortland. And people like the taste of Cortlands, but if the Arctic Granny tastes like a Granny Smith…I can name two hundred kinds of apples that taste better than Granny Smiths; it might be hard to market those apples. I don’t know if the Federation is just