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Genetically altered salmon: it's what could be for dinner

Some scary food news in The New York Times this weekend.

"The Food and Drug Administration is seriously considering whether to approve the first genetically engineered animal that people would eat — salmon that can grow at twice the normal rate," the story says.

If the salmon is approved, there is no guarantee that it would be labeled as genetically engineered; genetically engineered crops are not identified as such, the paper notes.

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Nor is there any guarantee that the genetically modified salmon wouldn't mess with the wild stuff.

"Some experts have speculated that fast-growing fish could out-compete wild fish for food or mates," the paper said. A rep for the company developing the fish tells The Times that "the salmon would be grown only in inland tanks or other contained facilities, not in ocean pens where they might escape into the wild. And the fish would all be female and sterile, making it impossible for them to mate."

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Haven't they seen "Jurassic Park"? Life finds a way. And not just in the movies.

Baltimore's own Dr. Joshua Sharfstein may have a hand in what happens. The former city health commissioner is deputy commissioner of the F.D.A. He's quoted in the story saying they're looking at labeling and going to keep the public informed on the whole thing.

So c'mon, Doc. Do the right thing. As a local guy, you must know we've already had our fill of Frankenfish.

Detroit Free Press photo

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