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• What happened: The U.S. Food and Drug Administration launched a 60-day approval process on Friday for genetically modified North Atlantic salmon. If approved, it would be the first animal to be engineered as food for human consumption in North America.
• How it’s done: Growth hormones from two salmon varieties, Chinook and ocean pout, are added to conventional Atlantic salmon, which grows twice as fast as similar fish. That lowers the cost and greatly increasing production.
• What’s next: The FDA holds a meeting for public input Sept. 21. If approved, GM salmon will be in stores within two to three years. A 31-member coalition of consumer, animal welfare, environmental and fishery groups has formed to oppose approval.
I've only driven through the grain states once, and certainly don't know a thing about farming. But I'm going to express an idea you see in science fiction stories and such...
In the future, we will have thousands of strips of land running through the corn belt. There will be bugs and birds and foxes and a whole ecology. Much more diverse and wider versions of the hedgerow. Surely there are less productive areas of land that ought to be pulled from production right now.
On vacation, I drove U.S. highway 2 across the northern part of the Columbia basin recently--during the wheat harvest. I'd like to have seen pockets of natural vegetation, especially in the cooler wetter hollows where the grain was still green and not even ready for harvest.
I'm sure some farmers here do have hedgerows and such. And maybe taking land out of production causes problems for adjacent farmland that is still productive, I don't know. Of course I have heard about reserves for pests, so that they do not become resistant--but maybe the nation needs to have a whole lot more of that.
I'm just expressing something that is very obvious, but I hadn't thought about it recently and always welcome the chance to think out loud.
As usual most folks are asleep I suppose. Even any form of modern physics would point to a given DNA sequence that "codes for" something as having a "dispositional property" related to that function with all sorts of other potential properties as well.
I guess you have a LOT of ego involved, to say nothing of the money. Some of these companies are going to evaporate overnight.