Monster Salmon

It can be found on buffets, with pasta, on rolls, steamed in dill sauce or on the grill. Salmon has become a mass delicacy that has long been produced on a large scale in fish farms.

The company AquaBounty Technologies wants to multiply the supply of salmon with a genetically modified salmon that grows twice as fast and six times as big as conventional wild salmon.

In the breeding of transgenic salmon, it is inevitable that some will escape into the wild, which would have fatal consequences for the wild fish population. While "normal" Atlantic salmon take about three years to mature for slaughter, the transgenic animals are not only larger but also sexually mature earlier, so they can outperform their natural counterparts. If only 60 genetically modified salmon are released into the wild, this could wipe out a natural population of 60,000 salmon in less than 40 generations of fish.

Neither AquaBounty Technologies nor the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have commissioned independent scientists to investigate the consequences for human health, the environment and animal populations.

Genetically modified salmon are about to be approved.

They would be the first genetically modified fish to be used commercially and sold as food, followed by carp and tilapia. Consumers will not be asked, but we and our nature will be exposed to a huge experiment. Possible consequences of genetic engineering on humans, animals and plants are irreversible! This is what this film talks about.

Director(s): Bertram Verhaag, Gabriele Kröber
Script: Bertram Verhaag
Production: ARTE, SWR, arte, Arte, Michel Morales, AVIV Pictures
Year: 2010
Duration: 33 min
Our age recommendation: 16
Language (audio): German, English
Country of origin: Germany
Shooting Locations:
Screening rights: DENKmal Film Verhaag GmbH (Switzerland, Germany, Austria)
  • This film can be watched for a fee at the top.


Main topic(s): Genetic Engineering + Seeds
Secondary topics: biodiversity population food security wildlife health
Mentions: genetic engineering fish farming fish farm transgenic salmon science health
Topic Page(s): Genetic Engineering + Seeds

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