Aramark says no to GE salmon

Pressure is mounting against the sale of genetically modified salmon from AquaBounty Technologies, which is poised to sell its first ever harvest of the fish in domestic markets in the first quarter of 2021.

The international food service company Aramark announced this week its commitment to not sell any GE salmon, a commitment already made by two other major food service companies, Compass Group and Sodexo, as well as major grocery retailers, seafood companies and restaurants nationwide.

Aramark’s announcement came in an update of the company’s sustainable sourcing policy: “Reiterating our previously stated opposition to genetically engineered (GE) salmon, we will not purchase it should it come to market. Avoiding potential impacts to wild salmon populations and indigenous communities, whose livelihoods are deeply connected to and often dependent upon this vital resource, is core to our company’s commitment to making a positive impact on people and the planet.”

The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California ruled in November that the Food and Drug Administration’s approval of AquaBounty Technologies’ GE salmon was issued unlawfully. The court concluded that FDA violated several core environmental laws in issuing the approval, including the Endangered Species Act. The ruling did not prevent the sale of GE salmon domestically, and plaintiffs in that case are seeking reconsideration of that decision.