Bioengineered salmon won't come from US's biggest farm state

This 2009 photo provided by AquaBounty Technologies shows a juvenile salmon raised at the company’s hatchery in Fortune, Prince Edward Island, Canada. The federal government has cleared the way for the fish to be sold in the US, but fish farmers in Maine haven’t shown an interest in growing it. (AquaBounty Technologies via AP)

PORTLAND, Maine — Genetically engineered salmon is heading to store shelves in the U.S., but it won't be coming from the biggest salmon farming state in the country.

Massachusetts-based AquaBounty Technologies says American supermarkets could begin selling the much-debated fish by the end of next year. Its fish are modified to grow about twice as fast as conventional salmon.

The company modifies Atlantic salmon. The species forms the backbone of the worldwide salmon aquaculture industry. Maine is the biggest producer of farmed Atlantic salmon in the U.S. It sometimes produces more than 35 million pounds (15.9 million kilograms) of the fish per year, and the industry is poised to grow. But the Maine Aquaculture Association says fish farmers in the state are not considering using the genetically engineered fish.

AquaBounty's genetically engineered salmon are also approved for sale in Canada.

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