Monday I covered local reaction to the possibility of genetically engineered salmon being available for sale and consumption. If the FDA approves the modified fish, it would be the first genetically engineered fish or meat product on the market.
One of the ways that we work on stories is to take national stories and localize them to make them more interesting. For this story, I talked to a co-owner of a real cool store called The Butcher Shop that sells local beef, pork, fish, and produce. The co-owner was incredibly willing to talk with me candidly about his opinion on the genetically engineered fish. We tried getting in contact with the FDA to get two sides of the story and make it more balanced. The FDA would not talk with us (or any other local affiliate) but pointed us in the direction of our national news affiliate. ABC produced video and soundbites on the story that we ended up using.
There already is modified fruits and vegetables in the market, and if it passes, GE salmon wouldn't be available for about two years. However, critics are concerned because it appears that the FDA might not require special labels to signify the difference between GE salmon and natural salmon. There would be no extra labeling, reportedly, because the salmon are so genetically similar.