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Norwegian Food Safety Authority (NFSA) has approved genetically modified canola oil for its salmon industry.

Also known as NS-B50027-4, genetically modified canola oil has been specifically developed as a terrestrial source of marine acids. Norwegian authorities say this is beneficial for the environment as farmed salmon are already fed fish oil to increase their level of omega-3.

“Wild fish obtain their omega-3 from consuming algae,” reports The Defender, citing GMWatch. “But wild fish stocks are depleted, and the price of fish oil has increased, meaning the amount of fish oil in salmon feed has significantly decreased in recent years.”

Omega-3 canola oil “Aquaterra” is promoted as sustainable in the media by Nofima, a Norwegian research institute that conducts research and development activities for the aquaculture industry. Its scientists have conducted research on Aquaterra omega-3 canola oil.

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It appears that GMO canola oil also solves another major problem of Norway’s farmed salmon industry: the lack of natural “pink” pigment in fish flesh, pink that normally comes from astaxanthin, as it naturally develops in wild salmon as it goes through life.

Farmed salmon may be technically salmon scientifically, but it is not the same as true wild salmon. As such, Norway is trying to artificially increase color levels in its farmed salmon industry to make the final product more appealing to the eye.

While some may believe that enriching fish feed with omega-3-enriched GMO canola oil is good for both humans and the environment, in fact, the opposite is true.

Previous research published in the journal PLoS One found that genetically modified crops harm the environment, including the distortion of pollinators, such as butterflies.

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Commenting on these latest developments, Dr. Angelika Hilbeck, Senior Scientific Researcher at the Institute of Integrative Biology at ETH Zurich in Switzerland, mentioned that the study in question provides a unique perspective on the dangers and risks of these types of GMO crops.

“The fact that these [long-chain omega-3 fatty acids] compounds are new to terrestrial systems has been completely ignored until this study,” said Dr. Hilbeck. “I congratulate the authors for raising the issue of this important ecological risk before these crops are grown on a significant scale.”

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TAGS: Autoritatea Norvegiana pentru Siguranta Alimentara, uleiul de canola modificat genetic, somonul de crestere, Nofima, canola omega-3 Aquaterra, PLoS One, Nori, medii naturale, Riscuri, Angelika Hilbeck
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