By Oliver Farrimond
SCOTLAND’S £1 billion salmon-farming industry is under threat from a new breed of Frankenstein Fish.
Genetically-modified salmon could soon be up for sale after American scientists declared the super-salmon safe to eat.
And now the US Food and Drug Administration are due to decided on whether they can be bred in farms.
The introduction of the salmon – which can be bred twice as fast as regular salmon – would have a “serious negative impact” on Scottish farmed salmon.
One company, US-based AquaBounty, has already successful bred the GM salmon in Panama, and there are fears that salmon producers worldwide would follow suit if the project is given the go-ahead in the US.
Struan Stevenson, senior vice president of the European Parliament’s Fisheries Committee, said: “The public is very suspicious about the safety of GM food and could confuse this new product with farmed salmon, leading to a decline in sales of all salmon.
“If GM salmon can now be produced twice as fast it could cause of worldwide collapse in the price which would have serious negative impact on Scottish farmed salmon.”
Scotland is the second-largest producer of salmon, with global sales totaling more than £1 billion.
It also employs more than 1,600 people.
A spokesman for the Scottish Salmon Producers Organistion said that GM salmon was “not permitted”.
A spokesman said: “GM salmon is not permitted in Scottish farmed salmon and we don’t forsee that changing any time soon.”