An international fruit company has won approval from the USDA to ship genetically engineered pineapple into the U.S.
The Del Monte Fresh Produce Co., based in the Cayman Islands, has developed a transgenic pineapple that has tissue of a “novel rose color.”
The company has altered the fruit to “overexpress” a gene derived from the tangerine and to suppress other genes, increasing accumulation of lycopene, a natural chemical, according to its submission to the USDA.
The plant’s flowering cycle has also been changed to provide for more uniform growth and quality.
USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service has found that the “Rosé” cultivar is a regulated transgenic crop but does not require a biotechnology permit to export the crop to the U.S.
The transgenic fruit “does not have the ability to propagate and persist in the environment once they have been harvested,” according to USDA APHIS.
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Originally published: Capital Press.