Cana­di­ans didn’t know they ate ge­net­i­cally mod­i­fied salmon

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - ATLANTIC -

It ap­pears Cana­di­ans were among the first din­ers in the world to eat a ge­net­i­cally mod­i­fied an­i­mal - and they likely didn’t know it.

U.S.-based AquaBounty Tech­nolo­gies said in a re­cent fis­cal up­date about 4.5 tonnes of its fresh AquAd­van­tage salmon fillets were sold in Canada be­tween April and June.

The com­pany got ap­proval from Health Canada and the Cana­dian Food In­spec­tion agency last year to sell the prod­uct.

AquaBounty CEO Ron­ald Sto­tish said in the quar­terly re­port re­leased ear­lier this month that the Cana­dian dis­tri­bu­tion marked “the very first sales of AquAd­van­tage salmon.”

“The sale and dis­cus­sions with po­ten­tial buy­ers clearly demon­strate that cus­tomers want our fish, and we look for­ward to in­creas­ing our pro­duc­tion ca­pac­ity to meet de­mand.”

AquaBounty - which has a pro­duc­tion plant in P.E.I. - did not say ex­actly where the salmon was sold. The com­pany’s spokesman did not re­spond to re­quests for com­ment.

Health Canada doesn’t re­quire la­belling on ge­net­i­cally mod­i­fied food, say­ing the items have been as­sessed for safety and nu­tri­tional stan­dards.

AquaBounty’s salmon con­tains ge­netic ma­te­rial from ocean pout and Chi­nook salmon to help it reach adult size faster.

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