Health News

Genetically Modified Arctic Apple Approved For Sale In Canada

Arctic Apples

British Colombia-based Okanagan Specialty Fruits (OSF) indicated in a press release that their Arctic brand of non-browning apple had received approval for commercial sale in Canada after the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) and Health Canada (HC) concluded their respective reviews.

The USDA approved the sale of their Arctic brand of GMO apples earlier in 2015.

The company’s press release — which was published on the Arctic Apples website’s blog last Friday, but is trending on Facebook today — quoted a letter sent to OSF from the CFIA which concluded that Arctic apples “are as safe and nutritious as traditional apples varieties”.

Health Canada disclosed a publicly accessible statement which concluded that the genetically modified, non-browning apples are “safe for consumption” and still have all of their nutritional value. Subsequently, the HC report claims that the Arctic apples “do not differ from other apples available on the market.”

The Canadian biotech company that is Okanagan Specialty Fruits Inc. has created two varieties of genetically engineered apples which are resistant to browning when bitten, sliced or bruised.

The two varieties of apples made by the company are known as Arctic Granny and Arctic Golden, which are genetically engineered variants of the Granny Smith and Golden Delicious apples.

In the United States where the company’s GMO apples received the USDA’s approval to be sold, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA)’s review is voluntary and its approval unnecessary for the company to move forward.

The company’s success has led to a multi-million dollar deal in which Intrexon Corporation, a US-based synthetic biology company, will buy the company in a deal CBC News reports to be worth $31 million in stock and another $10 in cash to the company’s shareholders.

What are your thoughts on OSF’s genetically engineered apples?

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