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AquaBounty expects FDA approval for GMO salmon

Staff writer |
AquaBounty Technologies expects FDA approval by the fourth quarter of this year to produce its genetically engineered salmon.

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The approval would be welcome because the company's net loses were $4.4 million last year, up from $2.7 million the year before. AquaBounty is still confident it has the cash to see its salmon reach the market in the U.S.

"There have been no new legal issues, no new regulatory issues, no new environmental issues raised. We should have approval before the end of the year," AquaBounty Technologies chief executive Ronald Stotish said to Reuters.

After a public comment period, which was brought to an end last week, he U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will one to two monthsis due to close a public comment period on Friday and will then likely take 30 to 60 days to review the comments and another three to four months to issue final approval.

The GMO salmon AquAdvantage would be an all-female population with eggs produced in a facility on Prince Edward Island in Canada and shipped to a grow-out facility in Panama where they would be reared to market size and harvested for processing. AquAdvantage salmon eggs are engineered to produce fish with the potential to grow to market size in half the time of conventional salmon. It would be the first food from a transgenic animal, one whose genome has been altered, to be approved by the FDA.

Whole Foods Market Inc, Trader Joe's and other food retailers representing more than 2,000 U.S. stores have vowed not to sell genetically engineered seafood if it is approved in the U.S.

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