Public Meeting on Genome-edited Fish in Kyoto
～What will happen to the future of food? ~
Japanese text here
Genome-edited foods are now being distributed in Japan, and in Japan alone, and are starting to appear on our tables. Moreover, two of the three types of genome-edited food distributed in Japan are fish (horse mackerel and tiger puffer fish). Until now, genetically modified fish have never been distributed as food in Japan. Genome-edited foods are as dangerous as, or even more dangerous than, genetically modified foods, yet the government has stated that there is no need to assess whether they are safe to eat or to label them. It is also totally unpredictable what will happen if genome-edited fish escape and enter the ecosystem. Regional Fish, the Kyoto University venture that developed, farms and sells such fish, has made no attempt to respond to our concerns or questions, while downplaying the dangers.
The fish farm is located in Miyazu City, Kyoto Prefecture, where the rich fishing grounds produce a lot of delicious local fish. However, Miyazu City has adopted genome-edited tiger puffer fish as an official “Hometown Tax Return Gift” as part of a program to promote local regions around Japan. Despite local citizens demanding that it be revoked, the city will not listen.
Regional Fish is developing genome-edited fish in collaboration with Food & Life Companies, which owns Sushiro, the revolving sushi restaurant chain. It has established a joint venture with NTT for land-based aquaculture and claims to be planning to establish new land-based aquaculture facilities across the country.
Genome-edited fish are now gradually making their way into our daily lives. But there is no labelling. We, the consumers, have no choice. Consumers Union of Japan is calling on Regional Fish to stop the development and cultivation of genome-edited fish, and on Miyazu City to withdraw them from its official tax return program. Furthermore, we are also working with the fishing industry to stop the onshore cultivation of genome-edited fish. This is why we have organised this meeting in Kyoto, where genome-edited fish are being developed and farmed.
We hope you will join us at this meeting to help protect the future of our food supply!
Date: 23 September 2023 13:00 – 16:00
Venue: Hito Machi Koryukan Kyoto, Kyoto Main Conference Room
Address: 83-1, Umeminato-cho, Kaminoguchi-agaru, Nishi-Kiyamachi-Dori, Shimogyo-ku, Kyoto
Participation fee: 500 yen
Capacity: 300 at the venue, 500 online
Application deadline: Tuesday 19 September
(Note: The meeting will be held in Japanese only)
12:30 Doors open
13:00-13:05 Opening remarks
13:05-13:50 Part 1: Keynote speech “How will genome-edited foods change the future of food” by Setsuko Yasuda
13:50-14:25 Part 2: Talk session “What is the problem with genome-edited fish?” by Keisuke Amagasa and Masahigashi Kawada
14:35-15:10 Part 3: Panel discussion “Genome-edited tiger puffer fish as a tax return gift for promoting hometowns”
15:10-15:40 Questions and answers
15:40-15:55 Appeal by fishermen, appeal on genome-edited tomatoes
15:55-16:00 Rally appeal, closing remarks