Health Canada and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency has determined AquAdvantage Salmon—a genetically modified fish engineered to grow faster—is as safe and nutritious as conventional salmon.

The AquAdvantage Salmon is a GM salmon developed by Massachusetts-based AquaBounty Technologies Inc. to promote rapid growth during early life. This was achieved by introducing a growth hormone gene from the Chinook salmon to an Atlantic salmon.

“GM foods are becoming more common every day and are part of the regular diets of Canadians,” the Canadian regulatory agencies said. “GM foods that have been approved by Health Canada have been consumed in Canada for many years, and are safe and nutritious. Changes to the genes of plants and animals can improve food quality and production – for instance by reducing the need for pesticides, making crops resistant to drought, preventing bruising, or allowing foods to be grown more quickly.”

FDA approved the salmon brand in November last year—the first approval in the US for a genetically engineered animal intended for food.