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Murkowski: Fighting Frankenfish Also Good For Business

Press Release

Location: Washington, DC

Senator Lisa Murkowski today contacted the President of Whole Foods Markets to commend him for taking the proactive step of making it corporate policy to label all genetically modified foods they sell -- a practice she advocated for on genetically modified salmon in a bill she co-sponsored last month. With genetically-modified salmon still being considered by the Food and Drug Administration, Murkowski shared her concerns in a letter:

"Frankenfish starts from a transgenic Atlantic salmon egg, in which genes from an ocean pout have been inserted into the genes of Chinook salmon, and then inserted into an Atlantic salmon. The egg is meant to produce a fish that grows to full size twice as fast as a normal Atlantic salmon. With all of these changes and additions, I question whether this "fish" should even be called a salmon.

According to a recent news article, Whole Foods President A.C. Gallo said that labeling has boosted sales on his shelves

A. C. Gallo, president of Whole Foods, said the new labeling requirement, to be in place within five years, came in response to consumer demand. "We've seen how our customers have responded to the products we do have labeled," Mr. Gallo said. "Some of our manufacturers say they've seen a 15 percent increase in sales of products they have labeled."

Murkowski responded she wasn't surprised that labeling items was good for business, "When any consumer is clearly presented with an option of natural salmon -- particularly from Alaska -- against putting some chemistry experiment on their plate, there really is no choice at all," she said. "I will continue my legislative fight against "Frankenfish' and am glad that the private sector is already incorporating my concerns; I'm encouraged that this common sense solution is good for business."

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