Cloned Meat is HERE

US says food from cloned animals safe

Updated: 11 minutes ago
The US Food and Drug Administration on Thursday took a big step towards approving the sale of meat and milk from cloned animals and their offspring without special labelling.

A draft FDA risk assessment found that food from clones of cattle, pigs and goats was as safe to eat as food from conventionally bred animals.

However, cloned meat and milk is unlikely to reach the shops before late 2007, at the earliest. Agricultural biotechnology and livestock companies will continue to observe a moratorium on their commercial introduction until the FDA has assessed public comments on the draft assessment and issued a final ruling.

The agency will receive hostile comments from some influential groups, such as the Center for Food Safety and the Consumer Federation of America, which accused the FDA of "imposing these products on a public that opposes cloning technology and does not want to consume cloned foods".

But the Biotechnology Industry Organisation welcomed the long-awaited FDA assessment. Jim Greenwood, BIO president, said: "Animal cloning is the latest step in a long history of reproductive tools for farmers and ranchers, and can effectively help livestock producers deliver what consumers want: high-quality, safe, abundant and nutritious foods in a conscientious and consistent manner."

Stephen Sundlof, director of the FDA's Center for Veterinary Medicine, said: "Based on FDA analysis of hundreds of peer-reviewed publications and other studies on the health and food composition of clones and their offspring, the draft risk assessment has determined that meat and milk from clones and their offspring are as safe as food we eat every day. Cloning poses no unique risks to animal health when compared to other assisted reproductive technologies currently in use in US agriculture."

If given final approval, the ruling would allow the sale of food from cloned cattle, pigs and goats, but not sheep, for the first time in the United States.

"No unique risks for human food consumption were identified in cattle, swine or goat clones," the FDA said in a draft risk assessment, which now enters a public comment period before the agency makes its final decision.

Copyright The Financial Times Ltd. All rights reserved.

Clone=identical twin. That's really all you have to understand. People are freaking out because they never took the time to understand what cloning is, and what it is not.

riots & loots at Gem Meats

I think it will eventually lead to a higher quality of meat.

cloned animals have not existed long. just because researchers say milk and meat are virtually identical to that of conventionally-bred animals does not mean that they have any idea about what effects, if any, that cloned animal consumption will have on people's health over time. therefore it's an experiment.

i'm pretty sure a lot of clones die during gestation or soon after birth. something just doesn't seem right to me.

i would like to have a choice, proper labeling of the product would be wise,

LOL@ the clone-fearing idiots.

This is going to be a huge business, buhleeee dat.

It can seem wrong to you until dogs do the waltz, but that doesn't make your irrational fear any more rational. Cloned animals HAVE existed for a very long time- any animal that does not reproduce sexually IS IN FACT a clone. The fact that we produce a clone by copying DNA is a difference of method, not a difference of kind. Non sexual reproduction existed before sexual reproduction. Wow! We're the freaks, not the clones.

Honestly, if we labelled products for differences as trivial as cloned vs. not-cloned (since the difference is only academic at best), there would be 10 yards of warnings on every product you bought.

this will lower the cost of meat and dairy significantly in the long run, and will improve the quality of meat by cloning superior animals

jonwell- i'm curious about the basis of your assumptions that i'm uninformed, freaking out, and irrational. i'm also curious if you are an expert in this field. i assume you are not based on the content in the above posts. regardless, true experts argue about this subject on many different levels, so dismissing an opposing opinion as if you are the only informed person here seems ignorant to me.

by no means do i claim to be an expert. i'm not completely uninformed, either. i have studied biology, genetics, and an assload of other sciences, so i have enough of an understanding of what cloning is and is not for a conversation here. i assume we are discussing reproductive cloning.

let me rephrase my comment from the previous post.. humans cloning mammals is relatively new, and humans consuming cloned animal products from animals that normally reproduce sexually is very new.

my "fear" is not irrational. reproductive cloning has many problems. it is inefficient and expensive. a very high percentage of attempts fail to produce viable offspring. many of the offspring die mysteriously. many have weak immune systems, lots of infections, tumors, and all kinds of shit. there is not good data on these cloned animals because they haven't been around very long. there is research that showing that certain genes are defective in products of reproductive cloning.

The FDA says it's "safe" to consume these products because they are virtually identical. that's making a scientific "leap". there has not been any research on long term effects on health of consuming these cloned animals and milk. i stand by my statement that we simply don't know whether or not it's safe to consume cloned animal products from animals that conventionally reproduce sexually. if they approve this for our consumption, only time will tell. it will be a big experiment.

keep in mind the FDA has a history of approving things that injure and kill lots of people who trust that what is approved is safe, only to find out there are serious consequences later.

all this makes me uneasy about consuming these products. enough is not known yet for people to say whether or not it's safe. i don't want to be the test subject. that's all. you can test it out if you're so inclined.

bill brasky- LOL@the FDA-trusting idiots. they make great sheep for the big shepards. and i agree it will be huge business, but that's another subject.

i wonder why the food industries are against labeling their products,

hormone infused radiated clone meat doen't have a nice ring to it

i agree, bigwilly. the yuk factor is powerful and they don't want to face it. who knows what other reasons they have.

Personally I'm much more worried about bio-engineered plants/animals than cloned ones.

Snail darter- with your accumulated education, please explain to me how cloning an animal is done, then explain how it would cause problems. Specifically, not just 'it's new'. I am always open to new evidence.

In the mean time, here's some light reading:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?db=pubmed&cmd=Retrieve&dopt=AbstractPlus&list_uids=17109945&query_hl=1&itool=pubmed_docsum

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?db=pubmed&cmd=Retrieve&dopt=AbstractPlus&list_uids=17092550&query_hl=1&itool=pubmed_docsum

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?db=pubmed&cmd=Retrieve&dopt=AbstractPlus&list_uids=17045329&query_hl=1&itool=pubmed_docsum

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?db=pubmed&cmd=Retrieve&dopt=AbstractPlus&list_uids=16807507&query_hl=1&itool=pubmed_docsum

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?db=pubmed&cmd=Retrieve&dopt=AbstractPlus&list_uids=15829585&query_hl=1&itool=pubmed_docsum

I could probly find more... note the lack of evidence that there is any danger in cloned meat.

jonwell- hope i didn't offend you. i'm just a kkm. in my brief experience here, it seems to me lots of peole attack or talk down their nose to those with opposing opinions, as if they can't possibly be plausible. the only reason i said anything about science is to imply that i have rationale for my opinion. i am not saying it's right or wrong, i'm just saying that i have taken the time in my life to undestand a little about cloning and to form opinions consuming these products. again, i am no expert, and for me to try and act like it would be laughable. but i can take a stab at explaining basics of reproductive cloning as i understand it and express my personal concerns.

reproductive cloning produces an animal that has the same nuclear dna as another animal. they remove genetic material from an egg, place dna of a donor cell into the egg, somehow stimulate cell division, and place the embryo into a female host for gestation.

however, it's not an exact replica of the donor animal. while the nuclear dna is the same, some of the mitochondrial dna comes from the cytoplasm of the egg. some think the problems i mentioned above ie mysterious deaths, very low success at producing viable offspring, deformity, weak immune systems, infections, etc. in cloned animals are related to this.. something to do with errors in the reprogramming process of creating an entire organism (clone) from a specific cell with a specific function, with different mitochondrial dna than the donor.

So.. cloned animals are NOT identical twins and cloned animals HAVE LOTS of problems. that is common knowledge.

this all leads to my issues as i explained in the above post. they have no way of knowing these products are safe for consumption. they have no idea what consuming these animals will do to the health of a population over time. maybe nothing. maybe something bad. maybe something good. nobody knows.

personally, i'm uncomfortable with the idea that the FDA is willing to declare cloned animals and milk safe for human consumption at this time. there are too many problems with the cloned animals. I question their motivation.

my opinion is that this is not trivial and that i deserve the right to know if i'm eating and feeding my family cloned animal products. i simply want the right to choose. so my position has to go back to the fact that all this is new and it is not possible to know whether or not this is safe at this time. if others are ok with it at this time, they should have the right to chow down on cloned meat.

that's the best i can do to explain my position. i too am open to new evidence. if my explanation is flawed, which it very well could be, i'll gladly stand corrected.

No offense taken. Sorry if I sounded condescending, my tone sometimes gets away with itself.

Your point about mDNA is correct- they're not exact twins per se, but considering that the mDNA of the clone cow is very very similar to the mDNA of the host cow, and that mDNA only comprises about .01% of active DNA in most animals, I don't see how this would cause a problem. It's possible sure, but again I have yet to see any evidence for this.

I've been doing some reading around, and your concerns about the health of cloned animals are valid, but outdated. It's believed that these issues were a result of poor technique, not anything more serious. Since clone labs are doing this a lot more often now, the viability of cloned offspring is much better. Even Dolly died due to a respiratory disease acquired as a result of indoor living- not from a problem of cloning.

If you look at some of the abstracts I posted above, you'll see what I mean. In the first study, for example, 89 board were insemenated, 61 successfully birthed, resulting in 242 cloned animals and 162 control animals.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?itool=abstractplus&db=pubmed&cmd=Retrieve&dopt=abstractplus&list_uids=17009889

This study (not listed in the ones above) shows no difference in the health or birth rates of cloned and conventional animals.

Well, I could go on. Look around pubmed and you'll find a lot of studies on the issue. None of them are negative!

There's absolutely no evidence upon which to base the claim that cloned meat is dangerous. Now I do think farms should be able to label it if they want to, but requiring a label simply isn't necessary. There's simply nothing to warn about.

In fact I hope they label it- makes it easier to find the superior product: cloned beef :)

Currently I work in the dairy industry so I have a decent grasp of the mechanics of raising cattle. I will refer to dairy below since that is my area of experience, but beef has a lot of similarities.

It will be a long time before cloned meat reaches anybodies table, due to the expensive lab work that must be done to clone an animal. Where the benefits will be seen first will be in advanced breeding programs.

Currently the vast majority of dairy cattle in the country are bread through artificial insemination. The farmer is able to buy semen from the best bulls in the country based on the traits represented in the offspring of the bull (which can be a huge number)

Another option used by some farms to speed genetic progression (to the goals of the farmer, these goals vary from operation to operation) is to flush eggs from an exceptional cow, fertilize these eggs and implant them in a lower producing, but good calving cow. This process is much more expensive than artificial insemination.

In the short term the main benefit of cloning will be that it enables much faster progress on the female side, eventually the consumer may see cloned meat on the table but that won't happen untill the cost of cloning is comparable with the cost of artificial insemination.

Cloning would result in more uniform meat, but a great degree of meat uniformity has already been achieved in the pork and poultry industries through more conventional methods. This has not been seen with beef because beef producers have chosen to market the breed of their cattle rather than the uniformity of the meat.

FRAT

not frat, interesting. TY

If you've eaten a banana, you've eaten a clone.