Consider The Source: The Debate Over Aquabounty Technologies’ Genetically-engineered Salmon

Will consumers buy the "new" salmon? A big debate is ensuing over a big fish about to enter the U.S. market.

There’s big news from the fish market! Coming soon, a genetically-altered salmon that can grown twice as fast – and twice as large – as a normal salmon! 

OK, what’s the first thing that comes to your mind when you hear that idea? Could this be a response to the growing demand for healthy fish products both in the U.S and Europe – and indeed, across the developed world? Could it even be an answer to the growing food supply problems around the world? Could such a genetically-altered salmon be a “frankenfish” – one that consumers will not want to buy – let alone eat? Could it even disrupt the normal patterns of the salmon population if it were to get out of the aquaculture farming system and into the wild?

Currently, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is considering authorizing Massachusetts-based Aquabounty Technologies application to sell consumers the first genetically-engineered animal for human consumption. This proposal has engendered a great deal of controversy – and media coverage.

So, for all of you students out there who are trolling the Internet and looking for a quick summary of the information that’s out there on the subject (especially if it’s very, very late and your paper is due very, very early tomorrow morning), here is a summary of the media coverage out there on the subject. By watching these clips, you can get yourself up to speed quickly on the subject of this genetically-engineered fish controversy:

So, what do you think? Here are some questions to consider?

  • Do you think the company (Aquabounty Technologies) will succeed with this product in the marketplace?
  • Are they being innovative – or just scary?
  • Should genetically-engineered food be allowed on the market?
  • How should it be labelled?
  • What obligation do stores and restaurants have to inform you that your fish (or any other entree) is genetically-altered?
  • How do you think consumers will react to the new salmon?
  • Is this a “slippery slope” for future developments?
  • Is there a role for lawmakers on this?

Here’s to a great debate – send me your thoughts and comments at my blog site Wyld About Business (



David C. Wyld ( is the Robert Maurin Professor of Management at Southeastern Louisiana University in Hammond, Louisiana. He is a management consultant, researcher/writer, and executive educator. His blog, Wyld About Business, can be viewed at He also serves as the Director of the Reverse Auction Research Center (, a hub of research and news in the expanding world of competitive bidding. Dr. Wyld also maintains compilations of works he has helped his students to turn into editorially-reviewed publications at the following sites:

·      Management Concepts (

·      Book Reviews ( and

·      Travel and International Foods (                 

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2 Responses to “Consider The Source: The Debate Over Aquabounty Technologies’ Genetically-engineered Salmon”
  1. Ethics0006 Says...

    On September 23, 2010 at 11:37 am

    Amazing Stuff

  2. alvinbsamuel Says...

    On September 23, 2010 at 10:46 pm

    interesting piece…especially the last video about the chef who won’t buy the fish. he’s right because one has to know what they are giving to the people, whether it be organic or, in this case, genetically engineered.

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