Contact: Christine Hall, 202-331-2258
Washington, D.C., December 28, 2006—The Competitive Enterprise Institute applauds the Food and Drug Administration for releasing its long-awaited Risk Assessment on animal cloning, which concludes that meat and milk from cloned cows, pigs, and goats are safe for consumers. The FDA is scheduled to release its assessment today.
After reviewing hundreds of scientific and medical studies, experts at FDA have given the process a clean bill of health, despite much opposition from activists.
“Thousands of cloned animals have been born since the world met Dolly the sheep in 1996, but critics still claim the process will create monstrous new hybrids in some kind of barnyard ‘Boys from Brazil.’ Nothing could be further from the truth,” said Gregory Conko, a senior fellow and director of food safety policy at CEI.
Conko points out that today’s proven method for cloning animals was first envisioned in the 1930s, but its use had to wait until the process was developed and perfected over the following decades. “Scientists today know far more about the health and well-being of cloned animals than the activists against this technology would have us believe,” says Conko.
As far as ethical questions surrounding the technology, Conko notes that breeders can produce better and safer food by cloning rare animals that produce leaner meat, for example, or that are especially resistant to common livestock diseases. Researchers in Asia have even cloned a cow that appears to be resistant to mad cow disease.
“The ability to drastically reduce illness among animals and to improve consumer safety arguably makes cloning more, not less humane than traditional breeding,” concluded Conko.