Meat and Dairy Industry Warned to stay Clone-Free

NEW ZEALAND - New Zealand's Dairy and Meat industries should position their products as "clone-free" to secure their premium-quality image and maintain a point of difference in the world market should US authorities approve cloned products.
calendar icon 11 January 2007
clock icon 2 minute read
The US FDA announced before Christmas a round of public consultation on plans to approve food products from clones as "substantially equivalent" to those from conventional animals.

Despite gross deformation in many animals created through cloning, and ignoring warnings from independent scientists of less-visible and untested differences, the FDA want to deny consumers the choice to avoid such products by not labelling them.

In the 1990's the FDA ignored its own scientists and made similar declarations that GE foods were "substantially equivalent" to conventional food and would require no labels or independent testing. The result has been the spread of contamination in the food-chain, and an international dispute that continues to this day with US farmers losing millions in exports.

The FDA cloning proposal has been welcomed by AgResearch scientists in New Zealand who have been researching cloning and genetic modification of cattle and sheep.

But GE Free NZ (in food and environment) believe it would be unethical to produce such products and market them without labeling.

Moreover given the global demand for clean, natural and organic foods New Zealand's use of cloned animals would put at risk the country's primary exports and international reputation.

"We are urging organisations like Meat New Zealand and Fonterra to recognize the threat to exports that cloning presents. The consumer is king and people want a choice to avoid such products," says spokesman Jon Carapiet.

"This can only be achieved by labeling and tracking of clone products, or by excluding them from food production entirely."

Source: Scoop NZ

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