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Faster-Growing Salmon on Tables

Genetically modified salmon is now on sale in Canada, New Scientist reports.

The US-based AquaBounty Technologies says it has sold about five tons of salmon fillets to Canadian customers. Nature News notes that that the fish went for $5.30 a pound.

According to New Scientist, these engineered Atlantic salmon harbor a growth hormone gene from Chinook salmon that makes them grow faster as well as a regulatory gene from ocean pout that ensures that the growth hormone gene stays on. In this way, the company says their salmon grows faster while needing to eat less food itself.

Nature News notes that AquaBounty developed the fish in the 1990s, and has grappled with regulatory issues. The fish was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration in November 2015 and by Canadian authorities a few months later. However, Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) inserted a provision into the 2017 US budget that disallowed the sale of the engineered salmon until the company finds a way to inform consumers that it is genetically modified. It notes there was no such holdup in Canada.