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Would you eat cloned meat?

08:37 UK time, Friday, 26 November 2010

Meat and milk from cloned cattle and their offspring is safe to consume, independent scientists have said. Are you happy to consume it?

The Advisory Committee on Novel Foods and Processes said it believed the food was unlikely to present any risk. The Food Standards Agency will discuss the conclusions in December before providing further advice to ministers.

In the US, South America and Asia, farmers can breed from cloned cows, sheep and pigs in order to increase milk and meat production. However, critics say there are strong ethical and animal welfare reasons to ban its use in European agriculture.

Should cloned milk and meat be available to eat? Should science have a part in food production? Have you changed your mind over the years about cloned animal products? Are you concerned about where your food has come from?

This debate is now closed. Thank you for your comments.

Comments

Page 1 of 6

  • Comment number 1.

    I guess with an ever blossoming population science will have to play a part in food production.
    As for eating meat from cloned animals I'm just not sure how safe this is. How many times haven't we been told something is "safe" only to have a health scare further down the line ?
    Personally, I don't eat meat. I gave up some years back when I looked at my roast lamb and thought that a good vet could probably get it up and walking. Just went off the whole idea of eating dead flesh. But each to his own !

  • Comment number 2.

    No. But then I do not eat meat period.

  • Comment number 3.

    Why do we need cloned animals ? It's not like we have a shortage of ordinary animals, is it ?

  • Comment number 4.

    No way would I eat such foods - as usual we are being experimented on in a through the back door way. The results of eating this dreadful stuff will show up in years to come and then it will be banned - just typical of the way we are treated by the Officious Ones. I'm going more and more veggie as our foods are mucked up by people trying to make more money for less work and the results will show in the future when people start falling down with yet more diseases and illnesses caused by playing about with nature.

  • Comment number 5.

    Yes I'd eat it if I was hungry enough. I just don't see why we need to create it.
    For endangered species perhaps (to get the population back to a viable level) but chickens,cows etc - don't these animals already have a perfectly good way to reproduce? - Perhaps we should take away the 'chick' benefit from them to encourage them to breed more :)

  • Comment number 6.

    Is there any evidence at all to suggest that there is any danger, or was any danger? No. Just the usual scare-mongering.

  • Comment number 7.

    Yes I would... maybe that's because I haven't had breakfast yet, though. Surely the whole point of cloning is that you end up with something which is essentially identical to the original, so it really shouldn't be any worse for you than any other animal?

  • Comment number 8.

    I can't see any reason why meat from cloned animals would be any less safe to consume the that of the original animal. Whether it's entirely necessary is a different case.

  • Comment number 9.

    "Meat and milk from cloned cattle and their offspring is safe to consume, independent scientists have said."

    We were told it was safe to feed cows to cows once and look where that got us. On this basis I will not be eating cloned meat. And yes, I do understand this is different.

  • Comment number 10.

    I would rather drink cloned milk and eat cloned meat than genetically modified crops. The latter have not yet been proven to have nil side effects and yet identical twins are a natural part of the animal kingdom.
    Who hasn't at some time eaten a double yoked egg?
    Have I got it right because I am no expert and rely on my instinctive feelings of self perservation?

  • Comment number 11.

    Cloned meat is literally identical to the meat that it was cloned from. That is the whole point of cloning - To make a copy. I bet if a piece of cloned meat and a piece of non-cloned meat were to be put in front of someone, no one in the world would be able to tell the difference, or would get sick later down the line.
    I never understand why people think that by humans modifying our foods (i.e. genetically modifying or cloning) we are going to in some way adversely affect the people that eat the stuff.
    I agree with oglidewell, this is just the usual scare-mongering that we have become used to hearing towards new technologies which can help produce food more effectively for our ever growing population.

  • Comment number 12.

    If we need to do this why are we putting food into our fuel tanks to keep the green clowns happy.

  • Comment number 13.

    Can you tell the difference between "normal" meat and cloned meat? no? because they're the virtually identical. Do you not know that many of the domestic animals (particular those you consume) are cloned when human settled down from hunting to agriculture? Do you also not know all offspring are somewhat clones from their parents?

  • Comment number 14.

    (quote)The Advisory Committee on Novel Foods and Processes said it believed the food was unlikely to present any risk..."

    Note the words "believed" and "unlikely". In other words, they aren't sure. If they were sure, they would say so and provide irrefutable proof.
    I'm a former working scientist; and I say there is no proof that this is "safe". One would have to conduct tests for years in order to acquire a full working knowledge of the effects of ingesting cloned foodstuffs.
    It is phraseology designed to try and win people over; just like mobile phone companies tell you it is "safe" to hold microwave radiation next to your head.

  • Comment number 15.

    I don't want to eat cloned meat.What is the matter with a farmer rearing cattle as they have always done?Are the scientists trying to put the farming industry out of business?
    Well managed herd is a far superior way of feeding people than by test tube.

  • Comment number 16.

    yea i would eat it, its not like its been radiated or anything.

    cloned meat it just 100% the same brain / it thinks the same way, & they; not like the meat has changed or any think.

    that is 100% OK. as long as they get fed the same thing, its fine.

    If you were to clone your self, you mussel would not change, it would be 100% the same, unless you pump weights, then it would; you would think the same way, and thats it.



  • Comment number 17.

    These animals have NOT been genetically modified so why the panic and scaremongering.
    It was exactly the same with the BSE panic, animal proteins had been fed to other animals for generations.
    The scientific research by Mark Purdey was never given any credit and his research made far more sense.
    The beef industry was seriously damaged for years.
    I personally would have no problem with meat or milk from cloned livestock.

  • Comment number 18.

    I dont understand why we need to clone cows. Cant we just let them reproduce naturally as they have done for centuries, its not like we have a shortage. Plus, didnt "they" tell us at one point that it was safe to eat beef, then along came mad cow disease and CJD. I am afraid we may see something similar happen here. Why take this unnecessary risk with peoples' health?

  • Comment number 19.

    Have cattle and chickens and pigs forgotten how to procreate?

    I don't see the need for cloning farm animals, they seem quite proficient in reproducing themselves without any help.

    Perhaps those developing expertise in cloning would like to consider applying their skills to endangered species instead.

    The main danger of cloning is the production of a uniform population - all too vulnerable to disease or an environmental change, while if the population has natural diversity some members would possess traits that promote survival.

  • Comment number 20.

    Yes I would eat it - I already eat the meat pumped full of allsorts they sell in the supermarkets, so this can't be any worse.

    Although as I work in a rural area - I do treat myself to meat direct from the farm on a regular basis.

  • Comment number 21.

    cloning - I wouldn't mid. As someone said, they are essentially creating a twin. Is it necessary? I doubt it.
    Genetically Modified Food? No way! For anyone that says it is safe, can they explain to me why Soap made with Canola Oil (US Geneticly modified Rape Seed Oil) goes rancid within 3 months and Soap made with European Rape Seed Oil does not, it lasts for 3 years or more?

  • Comment number 22.

    Yes......assuming that, after tax, the government leaves me with some money to pay for it.....

  • Comment number 23.

    No way! What do scientists know? They are forever changing their minds about everything.

  • Comment number 24.

    No, I wont eat any - if I get the choice, how will I be able to tell? Will it be suitably labelled?

    The so called independant statement does not say it is safe to consume. It says they "believe it is unlikely", thats not saying it is safe. When they make a catagoric statement I may re-consider, until then I don't want it.

  • Comment number 25.

    YES.

  • Comment number 26.

    I would guess that this will be another polarised debate, but for what it may mean, here's my tuppence worth (an expression which shows my age, doesn't it?) Though I have doubts about it, based on ignorance, yes I would, if the alternative was starvation, or even just plain good old fashioned hunger. It's really just a gut feeling that food produced in the time honoured way is probably better. Certainly my gut feels better for free range chickens and eggs, and I don't think that's a coincidence. How we feed the world without some helping hand I don't know. Ignorance again, you see. Possibly a vegetarian option may do the trick, but I'm afraid even that is one item on a long list of things I don't know, and I'm not really qualified to judge the often conflicting claims.

  • Comment number 27.

    Why do they need to clone animals in the first place? I fail to see any real benefit from it. As for eating it, I dare say it is meat like any other, but there is something "Frankenstein" about it, so would prefer to give it a miss.

    Also, rather flies in the face of this drive for all things organic.

  • Comment number 28.

    Meat from cloned animals would be a far sight more healthy to eat than meat injected with hormones and antibiotics or fed on ground up sheep's brains.

    But why do we have to go down the road of artifical reproduction for the animals, if we attempted to deny humanity the right to and pleasure of the usual means of sexual reproduction there would be an outcry that would be heard across the galaxy.

    What have these profiteering corporations got against animals? Watch out humans these same corporations could well have intentions about how to carry out human reproduction.

  • Comment number 29.

    Hang on, haven't we had this debate before? Oh yes, here it is http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/haveyoursay/2010/08/should_we_know_more_about_the.html. I suppose something has to fill time between the next round of Israel-bashing :)

    "At 09:15am on 26 Nov 2010, Sick_of_Layabouts wrote:
    No way would I eat such foods - as usual we are being experimented on in a through the back door way."

    Sounds painful.

  • Comment number 30.

    I'd have no worries about eating meat from a cloned animal for safety reasons. However I would reject it on the grounds of it being pointless commercial greed dressed up as science.
    Will it increase yields - a little maybe but not as much as other methods of farming, which currently don't make the profit required.
    There are methods that will produce more food but require higher manpower - and we will need them when we want to feed more people. Alas they dont make the profits for bigcorp so the governments and public are browbeaten into believing that science has the answers.
    If it does why is a certain company being taken to court to reveal true production information?


  • Comment number 31.

    No thanks -

  • Comment number 32.

    No I don't want to eat any products from cloned animals. Nor do I want to eat any GM or irradiated food or food that has been in any other way messed around with. But I guess as no government or other authority will address the elephant in the room, i.e. too many people in the world and not enough food we will, in the end, be left with no choice. So the scientists will declare it safe to eat and governments will enact legislation enabling it to be sold in our supermarkets and unless you can afford to pay over top for unsullied food you will have to get on with it. I am surprised we are not all rioting about things like this!

  • Comment number 33.

    At 09:43am on 26 Nov 2010, Megan wrote:
    Have cattle and chickens and pigs forgotten how to procreate?

    I don't see the need for cloning farm animals, they seem quite proficient in reproducing themselves without any help.

    Perhaps those developing expertise in cloning would like to consider applying their skills to endangered species instead.

    The main danger of cloning is the production of a uniform population - all too vulnerable to disease or an environmental change, while if the population has natural diversity some members would possess traits that promote survival.

    ________________________________________________________________________________________
    Makes sense to me, Megan, and the traditional methods of producing young is probably a lot more fun too. (Only probably? I must be getting old).

  • Comment number 34.

    Would I eat it ? I and anyone else who eats meat probably already has. There are worse things go into meat production and sales than the possibility of there being cloned meat included. What happened to BSE, I suppose it either mysteriously disappeared or the press forgot about it. What goes on in slaughterhouses and the back shop of the local butcher's would give you nightmares. Remember also a lot of the cereal going into meat production is from GM crops, in spite of denials. " We're all doomed !" Oh, dear !

  • Comment number 35.

    Alfred Penderel Bright wrote:

    I would rather drink cloned milk and eat cloned meat than genetically modified crops. The latter have not yet been proven to have nil side effects and yet identical twins are a natural part of the animal kingdom.
    Who hasn't at some time eaten a double yoked egg?
    Have I got it right because I am no expert and rely on my instinctive feelings of self perservation?

    -------------------------------------------------------

    Alfred,

    Cloning is an extremely dangerous course of action to take. Imagine if we clone a large amount of these animals and they become ill and have no natural defense against it? Shall we simply pump them anti-biotics that remain in the food chain? I hope not

    The whole point of natural breeding is to allow a species to not only propergate, but to develope immunities to illness and adjust to it's environment. When you make copies of copies of copies, you inevitably end up with the copy no longer being an exact replica of the original subject.

    This is another way for money to be saved and yet another example of mass over population. If a species cannot survive on its naturally provided food source, then it is not in balance with its surroundings, and as so a number of the species will die. If there are too many mouths to feed then we need to slow the population growth. If this is not the case, then it's the farmers and supermarkets looking for ways to save money and keeping charging high prices for products.

    On the other hand, how many 100's of tonnes of food do we actually waste each year?

  • Comment number 36.

    Large-scale intensive meat production remains one of the most wasteful and inefficient ways of feeding ourselves. Converting grain to meat by feeding it to animals for slaughter makes little sense when we could free up the land used for feed crops and grow food directly for our own consumption.

    Whether meat is from naturally-grazed herds, factory-farmed stock or cloned animals, it makes massive sense for us all to dramatically reduce our own personal meat consumption. It's better for the environment, better for animal welfare, and better for our own health.

  • Comment number 37.

    Would I knowlingly consume cloned products? NO I would not.Is there nothing that Farmers will not do to add to their already vast wealth? Mammon clearly rules the "Farming community".

  • Comment number 38.

    #10 “I would rather drink cloned milk and eat cloned meat than genetically modified crops. The latter have not yet been proven to have nil side effects and yet identical twins are a natural part of the animal kingdom.”

    Umm the way crops are genetically modified could be described as completely natural. As most of the time is achieved by selecting a naturally occurring virus which can be influenced to pick up the desired gene and then deposit it into the desired plant. The only “unnatural” aspect is the humans guiding the process (picking the genes for the virus to acquire, picking the plant to be infected and then screening the plants which successfully picked up the desired genes) rather than leaving everything to near random chance (Yes that means “organic” plants also get and always have been infected and their genomes modified by these abundant naturally occurring viruses).

    Besides despite greenpeace and pals claims, we do now have long term data showing that many varieties of GM crops are perfectly safe to eat.

    As to products from cloned animals, yes I’d happily eat it without pointlessly worrying of side effects. Cloning is a great way to reality quickly spread a desirable gene in a population of bovine to improve a herd (as long as it’s not over used leading to narrowing the breed’s genetic pool too much), without manually modifying their genomes which results in mindless hysteria.

  • Comment number 39.

    28. At 09:55am on 26 Nov 2010, SimpleOldSailor wrote:

    Meat from cloned animals would be a far sight more healthy to eat than meat injected with hormones and antibiotics or fed on ground up sheep's brains.


    True - but we'll probably end up with cloned meat which has also been injected with hormones, antibiotics and fed on sheeps brains, and of course fed on GM crops. Worst of all worlds!

  • Comment number 40.

    There's cloning and cloning.

    I understand most so-called cloned animals are in fact subdivided normal embryos, i.e. genetically no more than identical twins, triplets etc.

    Perhaps someone can confirm whether clones from other than zygotes, ovums, have ever been produced commercially for food.

  • Comment number 41.

    There's no way I'd touch cloned meat.
    We just don't know what the health implications are. Plus, what would it do to our genetics and/or DNA? We only operate on a 12 strand DNA as it is. I just think, with an ever increasing population we could take the responsibility to just limit our meat intake on a weekly basis. Maybe be encouraged to eat other food stuffs we wouldn't normally think to eat.

  • Comment number 42.

    Yet another story designed to grab the headlines. We are constantly being told we may be eating food that is bad for us and then we are told there is a crisis because we are all living too long. Nobody has worried about AI and that is not "normal"
    There are more vegetarians now in this country, if their numbers increase half the calves born born will be killed at birth, male calves will have no use and beef breeds will die out. Meat eaters give these animals a life and watching the cattle happily grazing in the fields I can not think that giving them no life at all can be kind

  • Comment number 43.

    The ACNFP conclusion doesn't name names, par for the course then. Shouldn't the Chief Medical Officer for Health be involved in such conclusions? Q. How are we going to know what is cloned and what isn't? Unless they put large clear tags on cloned milk and meat products, no-one will know any difference. But what happens if problems arise in the future, how will these problems be traced back to cloned products if suspicion centres on them? It has to be tagged as Cloned Products.

  • Comment number 44.

    The question you have to ask yourself is what's in the cloned meat and how could this effect me?

    Now i'm not a scientist, but from my very limited knowledge, the cloned animal is exactly the same in every aspect as the original animal? Maybe someone with more knowledge in this area can explain if anything else is added in the cloning process that could make it somehow unsuitable for human consumption?

    If nothing elses is added, and the cloned animal is exactly the same as the original animal which is fit for human consumption...why would it not be safe to eat?

    Also, don't forget that GM (genetically modified) food has been tampered with to make it an aspect of it different from the 'natural' version, which is different to simply cloning something??

    I'm not trying to be flippant before anyone starts berating me...I am merely seeking answers from someone more knowledgable to obvious questions that we should all be asking if we want to be able to make an informed choice one way or the other.

  • Comment number 45.

    I'm sure I have already many times. One in eleven cows are twins which are natural clones and no different to clones created through in-vitro methods.
    The reason farmers want to use cloning technology is simple. Sometimes they will have a prize winning stud and they will want to maximise their return on that animal by selling its dna to other farmers round the world. Obviously this is an improvement on selling the sperm on as the animal produced is guaranteed to have the characteristics of the original which isn't the case with selective breeding.
    For all those who say its never worth taking risks with science I would have to point out that all our current technology is achieved through risk taking and science is about understanding risks not putting the blinkers on.
    I do wonder about the problem of aged cells though. You see all cells have a limited number of times they can reproduce in any animal. This is the basis of the ageing process. Cells from cloned animals are no different. So an animal produced from a cloned animal starts its life with its cells as old as the donor animal. A clone of a forty year old man would already have cells that are forty years old, and such a man would show signs of aging before he was even out of his teens. In a cloned cow would this effect the meat? Maybe somebody who knows more about agriculture can answer this question.

  • Comment number 46.

    We will only be offered cloned meat if and when it becomes cheaper (for the supermarkets) than ordinary meats. Supermarkets are notorious for backing whatever is cheaper for them. One giant supermarket, for example, was in favour of Genetically Modified produce UNTIL the wind of public opinion was against. THEN, and only then, did it change its mind. Still, every little ...

  • Comment number 47.

    I think it's disgusting.

    But I will probably end up eating it anyway.

    This is the sad thing about a lot of meat eaters (Im the biggest culprit) - we kind of have a sense its cruel and a bit wrong, but do it anyway.

  • Comment number 48.

    This fear of genetically-engineered or cloned food is irrational and prejudiced.
    We chew the stuff, it passes down the oesophagus, is broken down by digestive enzymes and absorbed through the small intestine as basic fragments of sugars, peptides and fats. We do not absorb whole genomes of malevolent genetic code, to turn us into some hideous and fantastic chimera.
    If we're lucky, there may also be a decent number of ethanol molecules, to help us forget all this uninformed anti-science hysteria.

  • Comment number 49.

    Yes, I would eat it. A clone is genetically identical to what it was cloned from. So if the original was safe, the clone will be too.

    Don't see what all the fuss is about, myself...

  • Comment number 50.

    35. At 10:02am on 26 Nov 2010, Ben wrote:
    Alfred Penderel Bright wrote:

    I would rather drink cloned milk and eat cloned meat than genetically modified crops. The latter have not yet been proven to have nil side effects and yet identical twins are a natural part of the animal kingdom.
    Who hasn't at some time eaten a double yoked egg?
    Have I got it right because I am no expert and rely on my instinctive feelings of self perservation?

    -------------------------------------------------------

    Alfred,

    Cloning is an extremely dangerous course of action to take. Imagine if we clone a large amount of these animals and they become ill and have no natural defense against it? Shall we simply pump them anti-biotics that remain in the food chain? I hope not

    --------------------------------------------------------

    Ben,

    The whole point of cloning would be to select the healthest specimen that already has natural immunities to many common viruses/infections, as these attributes would be passed on to the clone. Also, the clone would be just as capable of naturally creating it's own immunities as the original animal...that's the whole point of cloning - it creates an exact match of the original in just about every way.


  • Comment number 51.

    "The Advisory Committee on Novel Foods and Processes said it believed the food was unlikely to present any risk.
    The Committee hedges its bets. It BELIEVES the food to be UNLIKELY to present a risk. Hardly a ringing endorsement. Enough to get them off the hook if things did turn bottom up, but a 'belief' something is 'unlikely' doesn't convince me as a former scientist. To say something is unlikely isn't the same as saying it won't happen. I know they can't give a copper bottomed assurance, so until they can (probably never) count me out
    Should cloned milk and meat be available to eat? No
    Should science have a part in food production? Of course, but it depends what sort of science
    Have you changed your mind over the years about cloned animal products? No
    Are you concerned about where your food has come from?
    Very much so

  • Comment number 52.

    Many people here are against eating cloned meat and are worried about consuming animals that have been 'pumped full of anti-biotics' and other 'unnatural' substances that could be harmful to us in the long run.

    Here's an idea which I'm sure the scientists have already discovered for themselves - the need for pumping animals full of such substances could be eradicated once cloning has been perfected?

    Here's my logic...perfectly natural thoroughbred animals with good immune systems, the ability to fight new infections and produce very tastey meat perfectly fit for human consumption exist. It's quite difficult to bread these animals in vaste numbers while maintaining these natural aspects, and it's even harder to do at low cost. Here's where the cloning comes in -

    Surely if you can clone these animals once the science has been perfected at relatively low cost there wont be a need to pump the cloned animals with any 'unnatural' substances as they'll all inherit the original animals natural defenses and tastey meat?

    Maybe someone more knowledge could subtantiate this theory??

  • Comment number 53.

    Well I suppose if I'm sitting in a restaurant and I say to the waiter "I will have the same as what he is having" I won't be wrong any more.

  • Comment number 54.

    I believe in Natural Selection.
    So I don't want to eat GM food (because I think nature does a better job than mankind). And I don't want to eat cloned foodstuffs because they result in a monoculture which will (through economics) destroy the diversity we'll need in the future.

  • Comment number 55.

    You'd eat anything if you're hungry enough but personally what with GM foods on the increase, I'd rather starve.

  • Comment number 56.

    I'm sure it is safe to eat but that's not the issue. Using cloned meat is akin to putting all your eggs in one basket from a biodiversity point of view (pun very much intended). Herds of cloned cattle will have no resilience to disease; the tiniest weakness in the immune system of one cow will mean the whole heard could be lost. Reliance on cloned meat is a recipe for famine.

  • Comment number 57.

    Absolutely no problems with eating cloned animal meat.
    We are coming to a period that whether the animal lovers like it or not we will have to change animal production for the food chain to battery type farming.
    If this means cloning to increase production so be it.
    The way infertility seems to be increasing in humans I would not be surprised to see cloning of our race. I can see science fiction becoming fact, especially with the USA building a throwaway army.
    I digress sorry, yes I will eat cloned meat, probably have already.

  • Comment number 58.


    I presume we are talking here about natural grown-on whole animals and not flesh grown in vitro from cell-lines.

    Of course I would eat the flesh of cloned cattle, etc; I guess I eat the flesh of natural identical twins also.

    I regularly eat farmed triploid and tetraploid fish flesh - as do we all.

    I would be more concerned about hormone transfer from force-breeding husbandry methods.

  • Comment number 59.

    Its not the concept of cloned meat which worries me, its the distrust that I and others have of both governments and the commercial enterprises they pander to.
    I understand that cloned meat is widely used in the USA, where commercial interests dictate US policy. It would be interesting to see if any long-term tests have been conducted, and what the results might be.
    One final, genuine fear I have is; what next? Nature has a way of fighting back if its messed about with, and the next stage might be to cross-fertilize different animals in order to make more profit. Then there is the question of cloning clones. When will they run out of the real DNA, and start down the path of copying copies? Ever tried to copy a photocopy?

  • Comment number 60.

    Why would I want to? What is the benefit to me, please don't tell me chicken would be cheaper! :) Look at the meat available now in supermarkets, unless you are prepared to pay top dollar for an organic corn fed chicken you get an Elvis impersonator - bloated and full of drugs. Food first and foremost should be "natural", governments should legislate to ensure our food is free of any additives outside of natural preservatives. The tasteless apples and tomatoes available in supermarkets in this country are an embarrassment caused by people choosing food by sight over taste. I say keep your Danny laRue vegetables and your Elvis impersonator chickens and legislate for taste and health.

  • Comment number 61.

    52. At 10:52am on 26 Nov 2010, Nic121 wrote:

    Many people here are against eating cloned meat and are worried about consuming animals that have been 'pumped full of anti-biotics' and other 'unnatural' substances that could be harmful to us in the long run.

    Here's an idea which I'm sure the scientists have already discovered for themselves - the need for pumping animals full of such substances could be eradicated once cloning has been perfected?


    Quite the opposite I'd have thought, because animals with genetically identical immune systems are going to all be susceptible to the same diseases. Diversity increases immunity.

  • Comment number 62.

    “Should science have a part in food production?”

    Imagining food production without science, perhaps using witchcraft or religion instead, is naïve.

    Science has had the major role in food production from before medieval crop rotation and through to modern genetic editing and cloning.

    Without science we would not have food in the quantity or quality that we have today.

  • Comment number 63.

    Would I eat clone meat?.. Possibly..

    Would I eat cloned cattle?.. Definitely not

    I have eat any animal that is big than me !!! Why ? Because the fat molecules of cattle are bigger than human molecules,and therefore tend to cause problems in human when consumed..

    In general any cloned materail tends to be the age of the donor ...for example Dolly the sheep was basically a 7yr old lamb on birth !!! I don't know how that pans out went eaten (long term ). but i shall wait until I am really hungry before eating such cloned meat ..

  • Comment number 64.

    Apologies, but I have had a laugh at most of the posters who "would rather starve than eat GM meat/fruit/veg.

    If I put two plates of food in front of you, with the same type of food on each, and asked which you preferred, you'd base your answer on taste, presentation, etc. If I pointed out that one contained all GM foods then you'd naturally go for the other one as "natural". But you wouldn't know or be able to tell the difference unless the seed had been planted.

    So, for all of you, accepting that we're meant to have laws that forbid selling of modified foods without pointing it out, how do you know whether you have already consumed something that has been genetically modified unless you grow all of your own food from seeds you gather from your own garden?

    Eat GM or starve? I'm not leaving this life before I have to, as it may be the only chance I have at consciouness, so I'll have GM and whatever else is going before I win a pyrrhic victory over science.

  • Comment number 65.

    Do we have any REAL choice? Safe or not I'm sure it would seep into the food chain whether regulated or not. Labeling food doesn't work. Restaurants and food chains can use what they like as there is no real way to check the source without relying on some governing body (which if the FSA is anything to go by then it's the blind leading the blind)

    Personally I don't have a problem with it, as I found as tried to explain the drawbacks to somebody the other day. No there isn't anything wrong with it in theory... but we interfere with nature way too much but only have a tiny fraction of knowledge about the effects.
    Nature has taken millions of years to evolve our planet to a perfect state of ecology... and yet some scientists with a few years study under their belts tell us it's fine to impregnate genes into embryos. Well I'm sorry... but given the choice I will pick the natural route every time. Never trust anyone who'd choose to spend their life in a laboratory sniffing noxious chemicals.

  • Comment number 66.

    I don't eat any meat.

  • Comment number 67.

    If you eat meat, you probably have already eaten cloned meat in one form or another. Global food corporations and their tame politicians ensure that you are not told the truth about the origins of the food you eat. If you think labelling provides you with the choice, think again.

  • Comment number 68.

    It seems strange that animal welfare people are more concerned about animal rights than feeding us when so many Halal butchers are processing meat in such horrific ways.Why is no one doing anything about that?.As for eating cloned meat.Not on your Nelly mate as its just plain wrong and we have enough animals to eat as it is.

  • Comment number 69.

    No. Cloning is in no way a solution to feeding an overpopulated world. Obviously the very first priority is for all of us to make sure the population begins to reduce as soon as possible. However, in the short term, feeding most of the world on meat just not feasible economically or environmentally - we need to look in a lot more detail at sustainable ways of producing crops.

  • Comment number 70.

    59. At 11:07am on 26 Nov 2010, UKcerberus wrote:

    Its not the concept of cloned meat which worries me, its the distrust that I and others have of both governments and the commercial enterprises they pander to.
    I understand that cloned meat is widely used in the USA, where commercial interests dictate US policy. It would be interesting to see if any long-term tests have been conducted, and what the results might be.
    One final, genuine fear I have is; what next? Nature has a way of fighting back if its messed about with, and the next stage might be to cross-fertilize different animals in order to make more profit. Then there is the question of cloning clones. When will they run out of the real DNA, and start down the path of copying copies? Ever tried to copy a photocopy?
    ________________________________________________________
    Mmmmmmmm fuzzy lamb chops! :)

  • Comment number 71.

    59. At 11:07am on 26 Nov 2010, UKcerberus wrote:
    ...One final, genuine fear I have is; what next? Nature has a way of fighting back if its messed about with, and the next stage might be to cross-fertilize different animals in order to make more profit...


    Ever heard of a smallturk? It's a (naturally occurring) cross between a male rooster and a female turkey. Or are you talking about half-dog half-horse type cross fertilisation? That's maybe still science fiction for now.

  • Comment number 72.

    Should cloned milk and meat be available to eat? NO

    Should science have a part in food production? It has done for a long time!

    Have you changed your mind over the years about cloned animal products? NO

    Are you concerned about where your food has come from? YES

  • Comment number 73.

    No, no, no. This is truly "The Age of Stupid". We should be eating far less meat, not add more from even more animals. Are there really still people out there who are not aware of global warming - and the animal-methane connection here? Get real! I am sick and tired of people chasing the big money to the detriment of planet Earth! Also the welfare of such animals is at stake - we are treating the animals we eat already atrociously, and this will only get worse with cloned animals. Another fact is that no sufficient testing has been done yet - for the simple reason that proper tests take more than 10 years as it has to be quite clear that there are no health problems that could emerge only after consuming cloned meat for decades. In other words, we don't know what illnesses could befall us if we regularly eat cloned meat for 10, 20 years. The accumulatory effects of such meat consumption could be totally detrimental to our health in the long run.

  • Comment number 74.

    I would eat it.The big danger is that you can`t keep copying things, you need new genes.What looks good today can with breeding be improved.Then look at big companies who in vest in this bio-technology.Today we have cancer drugs that cost 30 thousand for one years treatment and the nhs won`t pay the cost.The whole point to bio-tech or any tech,is to bring down costs and making it available to everyone.
    If the clone costs more then don`t buy it.If the drug companies won`t give discounts then stuff them.

  • Comment number 75.

    Cloned meat should be identical to non-cloned meat so yes I would.

    The issue, though, is the inherent problems with the cloning process. Clones are known to be more at risk from physiological problems and illness than non-clones; So you would have a greater animal welfare issue to consider in a commerical environment. That means yet more drugs and less viability in livestock.

  • Comment number 76.

    didnt dolly the sheep have many health problems and die young? we should expect our food to be as perfect as can possibly be. that is why i grow alot of my own and my son in law provides the rest from his home grown vegetable business on his farm. the small amount of meat we eat is also produced on the farm. all of you have the same opportunity to seek out the best for yourselves!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Comment number 77.

    Of course I would.

    Though I do wonder if I would suddenly be hit by this feeling of De Ja Vu ...

  • Comment number 78.

    8. At 09:28am on 26 Nov 2010, cognitivedefeat wrote:
    I can't see any reason why meat from cloned animals would be any less safe to consume the that of the original animal. Whether it's entirely necessary is a different case.

    =======================================

    Cloned animals are FACTUALLY a SERIOUS THREAT to WORLD food production & supply which is the SOLE reason why they should be REJECTED.

    Such animals are probably safe to eat, but this is a 100% DECEITFUL, PRETENTIOUS, SCHEMING, MISLEADING, FRAUDULENT, MANIPULATIVE ILLOGICAL ARGUMENT, based PURELY upon those with VESTED interests of utilising cloning.

    Cloning is a DIRECT THREAT to ability to defeat viruses and diseases and relies 100% on drug manufacturers etc of inventing a SINGULAR drug/etc which can combat any singular viarl threat, of which currently, scientists are FACTUALLY LOSING the battle of producing anti-biotics for HUMANS, let alone other animals/livestock.

    Humans and animals have survived many plagues, viruses, diseases thoughout our existance due to the FACT that ALL creatures were DIFFERENT and NOT of the SAME exacting and specific genes and DNA.

    If ONE cow catches a cold, then if they are ALL clones, they ALL will.

    If ONE cow catches a NEW virus, then ALL same cloned cows can catch it and suffer the SAME consequences.

    Imagine if everyone was cloned when the BLACK PLAGUE or other plague hit.

    It was the VARY differences in individuals genes & DNA which ENABLED SURVIVAL.

    LIFE IS FACTUALLY BASED PURELY ON VARIABLES, REDUCE, MINIMISE THOSE VARIABLES AND YOU FACTUALLY MINIMISE AND REDUCE THE VARIABLES WHICH ENABLE SURVIVAL AND EXISTANCE OF SPECIES.

    We ALREADY KNOW, that due to changing viruses etc, many anti-biotics have been made USELESS and are now less effective or even totally ineffective and the human race is actually under serious attack and threat from changing/adapting viruses/bacteria.

    The SAME is of animals. WHOLE herds of animals in the wild with similar DNA & genes have been annilated by simple viruses, let alone more complex ones.

    Lets get this 100% FACTUALLY RIGHT.

    WHO would FACTUALLY benefit the MOST from cloned cattle.

    WHO would hold SWAY and POWER over the WORLDS FOOD PRODUCTION.

    The answer is DRUG companys.

    IMAGINE any such threat as bird flu.

    Do you NOT remember the news headlines such as - 'Inevitable' flu pandemic 'will kill 75000 Britons and 50 million ...

    Do you NOT remeber the recent national reaction and PANIC and innoculations to the most recent threat.

    IMAGINE such a THREAT to our FOOD PRODUCTION.

    Do you take a chance with such an implied threat to food supply, or WOULD YOU INNOCULATE EVERY SINGLE COW/BULL especially if they are of the SAME CLONED genes & DNA.

    Cloning of livestock, is BASICALLY and FUNDAMENTALLY and FACTUALLY a CHARTER of empowerment of drug manufacturers.

    Just one thing, is it REALLY that sensible to put SO MANY eggs in ONE basket.

    As far as I am concerned, these scientists who back cloning of livestock, are basically and fundamentally ignorant stupid MUPPETS who IGNORE the BASICS of KNOWN SCIENTIFIC KNOWLEDGE.

    CONSUMPTION is NOT FACTUALLY the BIGGEST or WORST THREAT/PROBLEM of CLONED ANIMALS OR OTHER MANIPULATED FOOD CROPS.

    This argument being put forward is as OUTRAGEOUS as the recent drug argument which DEMANDS legalisation & changes to illegal drugs because of the low level harm they do to users.

    The FACTS PERTAINING to drug use, is that the CONSEQUENCES of USE, MORE GREATLY HARM OTHERS in society than the user, yet THIS SIMPLE FACT IS NOT PART OF THOSE PATHETIC SCIENTISTS ARGUMENT.

    Science and ANY information/facts are FINE, when NOT manipulated and DECEITFULLY ABUSED by those with DECEITFUL VESTED and BIASED interests.

    Such arguments as with cloning and drugs, are as vile and pretentious and outrageous as those twisted and perverted arguments the Nazis put forward for introducing their vile policys.

  • Comment number 79.

    Cloning is a great idea which could help with species struggling to survive. I fail to see why it should be used for the abundent species such as pig, cow and chicken.

  • Comment number 80.

    The fastest way to see how many people do eat it is to launch it onto the market at half price - - - I for one have no qualms about eating either cloned meat , or genetically moidified crops.

  • Comment number 81.

    And as another point that needs to be got across now is that

    CLONING AND HAVING NATURAL IDENTICAL TWINS ARE NOT THE SAME PROCESS!

    Cloning is artifically reversing natural cell development: The resetting of "gene switches" so that they can start again. It is this which increases the chance of problems in the cloned animal.

  • Comment number 82.

    Yes, because it is just the same as meat from the original animal. The British seem to have a hang up on perfectly safe food that science has enabled to be produced. The scaremongering about GM crops is another ridiculous scare.
    What I am concerned about is that animals are treated well during their lives and I am willing to pay a premium for meat from grass-fed cows and free range eggs. There are also issues where animals are pumped full of hormones and antibiotics.

  • Comment number 83.


    I feel the issue is not with the cloning - which is just the maintenance of a particular advantagous genome.

    The issue is more about the particular genetic modifications in the animal supplying the cloned offspring.

    If the modification is to provide more meat, more milk or more insulin, etc, the issue should be the concern that the modified animal has 'quality of life' as we commonly understand it.
    For instance - if the flesh-to-bone ratio causes bone weakness/breakage, if the udder-size is so large it needs artificial sling-support, if the insulin load adversely affects the animals own physiology, then concern should be expressed in legislation.

    Should a 'more-productive' food animal have an acceptible lifestyle in husbandry, then the production-magnification via cloning makes sense in a populous human world.

    It will, however, not stop starvations in the medium to long term - the human populations will grow to the new point of starvation. The key human issue is how to hold human population levels well below the local carrying-capacity-of-the-year.

  • Comment number 84.

    61. At 11:09am on 26 Nov 2010, Rufus McDufus wrote:
    52. At 10:52am on 26 Nov 2010, Nic121 wrote:

    Many people here are against eating cloned meat and are worried about consuming animals that have been 'pumped full of anti-biotics' and other 'unnatural' substances that could be harmful to us in the long run.

    Here's an idea which I'm sure the scientists have already discovered for themselves - the need for pumping animals full of such substances could be eradicated once cloning has been perfected?

    =======================================================================

    Quite the opposite I'd have thought, because animals with genetically identical immune systems are going to all be susceptible to the same diseases. Diversity increases immunity.

    =======================================================================

    A fair point Rufus which I respect...but I think it's already common practice in farming that when one animal in the herd is infected with a potentially crippling or life-threatening illness, the entire herd is treated with the same medicine and/or immunised in the same way regardless of their natural immunity as the farmer can't afford to take the chance that they will be immune? Again, maybe a knowledge farmer on this forum will tell me i'm wrong?

    If this is the case, having an altogether healthier cloned herd with better immune systems will still be advantagous?

  • Comment number 85.

    Obviously these cloned animals are evil and have no place on our planet. Anyone who does eat them will turn into a zombie. Don't say I didn't warn you.

  • Comment number 86.

    "61. At 11:09am on 26 Nov 2010, Rufus McDufus wrote:


    Quite the opposite I'd have thought, because animals with genetically identical immune systems are going to all be susceptible to the same diseases. Diversity increases immunity."

    Not really - high diversity decreases the rate of inborn (i.e. genetic) diseases, not externally transmitted diseases that the immune system deals with. Whilst it is possible to develop a genetic resistance to transmitted diseases, it would take a very long time for such an immunity to develop naturally through evolutionary changes, any animal created via cloning will have whatever genetically mediated disease resistance the original did, no more, no less.

    The much-posited argument that we have 'no evidence' that cloned (or GM, for that matter) food is not harmful is simply not true, anyone with even a rudimentary understanding of how genetics works can assert with confidence that cloning poses no risk to food health becuase we have been eating identical food since the dawn of time - that's a pretty thorough evidence base.

    It seems wildly ironic to me that the same people who demand lower carbon emissions to save the planet also want 'organic' farming to be used (hugely increasing the carbon output of any food production) and, whilst demanding that we stop using artificial pesticides, antibiotics and fertilizers, also refute the only possible solution to them - genetically modify food species so we do not require extra artificial inputs after they are born and get increased productivity at the same carbon cost and NO RISK.

    As it stands, we have 3 choices:

    1) Do nothing - we carry on as we are and a combination of global warming and increasing population kills all the poor people (let's face it, it's not us rich westerners that are going to carry the cost of this).

    2) Don't use cloning or genetic modification (out of ignorance and fear) but promote only organic farming or vegetarian diets - global warming increases in speed due to huge efficiency losses in food production, kills all the poor then kills most of the rich too.

    3) Actually bother to find out how cloning and genetic modification works, realise that it carries no more risk than 'natural' food and move over to entirely GM and cloned food production - more food is produced with less energy consumption (and so less carbon output), global warming is alleviated and we can all (rich and poor) eat.

    The right decision should be pretty obvious to all.

  • Comment number 87.

    "The Advisory Committee on Novel Foods and Processes" ?
    Wasn't it just a few months ago that the Government said it was getting rid of all the non-jobs and Quangos?
    the real problem is that cloned meat has a really scary sounding name. Didn't Obi-wan Kenobi fight in the Clone Wars?
    If they called it something like "yummy nosh" or "Mmm-tasty-healthy" people wouldn't have a problem with it.

  • Comment number 88.

    As long as the first one tasted good then why not.

  • Comment number 89.

    I dont seem to get a choice about eating Halal meat (seems to be creeeping in everywhere without our full knowledge) so why should cloned be any different.

  • Comment number 90.

    Effectively people have been cloning animals and plants for thousands of years.If we hadn't we would still be a tribe of hunter gatherers
    In the US Cloned and GE food stuffs have been eaten safely for decades.

    The media obsession here with"frankenstein foods" is just hype to seller print

  • Comment number 91.

    Yes.

    Meat is part of an omnivore's diet and human beings are omnivores. Cloning the animal and breeding from cloned animals cannot possibly result in a health risk to humans - although it does sound like a good plot for a 1950s style horror film.

    I am more concerned with eating meat from animals pumped with antibiotics and other chemicals and with poor quality meat because the animal was fed a non-natural diet than I am concerned with eating cloned animals. (BSE was an example of what can happen)

    However, a comment above that humans eat too much meat is absolutely correct.

    I eat a vegan diet three or four days per week as part of a balanced diet and the health of the world (the planet as well as the individuals) would be much improved if everyone followed a similar diet. And vegan diets can be very tasty very filling and VERY cheap if you know how to cook and understand how to balance the food nutrients.

  • Comment number 92.

    Yes I would. Many times over ;)

  • Comment number 93.

    Oh, I'm enjoying the comments here - and I mean that in a nice way. Not one comment yet has blamed the coalition for this.

    I understand the comments about "fuzzy food" and preferring "perfect meat", but I don't eat perfect fruit or veg - I avoid (wherever possible) the homogenised tat that supermarkets display as a triumph of style over substance, and prefer something with more taste and character, regardless of its looks.

    But I like the thought of Mother Nature's revenge most of all. Why worry about the global warming cow methane problem, when this is nature's natural way of clearing the world before starting a new experiment. We'll get hotter, undergo climate change, go through an ice-age and die out. Then the world will move on. So all the tinkering we're presently doing will count for hee-haw. However often we end up cloning ourselves we'll still die out, because nature's more clever than we are and plays the long game. So eat what you want and enjoy life - it's over too soon and you don't get another chance (unless you're a Buddhist).

  • Comment number 94.

    OK, despite my previous comments I have to accept that one viable issue has been raised against the idea of cloning:

    Having an entire herd cloned from one animal will increase the liklihood of the entire herd catching the same virus and dieing. I think that's quite a good arguement as to why cloning entire herds from the same animal is not good.

    We still need diversity to ensure the survival of the herd so...isn't there a balance to be had here? Maybe cloning is still viable and safe if a variety of healthy specimens with different immune systems are cloned? This way you keep the natural diversity and increase the chances of at least a proportion of the herd surviving an infection?

    I still haven't heard a good argument yet for not eating cloned meat and why it might be bad for you as some posters have suggested? That is afterall the principle question on this forum.

  • Comment number 95.

    As the 3rd World reaches its asperations to live better, the resources we Westerners take for granted are going to end up being spread around the whole of society. If you think that petrol/disel costs are high, when the average Indian/Chinese/African has a car we can expect to pay several pounds a liter. The same goes for food. As it is, we are told to save for out old age - only to see inflation consume it faster than we can save it. Just the simple act of eating our current diet and living our current lifestyle is causing an inflation rate that is way ahead of any saving benifits we may have. Without Cloned or GM foods get used to being cold, poor and hungry, especially if you are going to be old/elderly over the next 20 years - Oh! and my savings are currently worth £16,000 A very sizable and adequate sum when I had to give up work. The curent intrest I get from my Trust Fund is about 0.5% Less than £80 per annum!

  • Comment number 96.

    Nic121 wrote:

    Many people here are against eating cloned meat and are worried about consuming animals that have been 'pumped full of anti-biotics' and other 'unnatural' substances that could be harmful to us in the long run.

    Here's an idea which I'm sure the scientists have already discovered for themselves - the need for pumping animals full of such substances could be eradicated once cloning has been perfected?

    Here's my logic...perfectly natural thoroughbred animals with good immune systems, the ability to fight new infections and produce very tastey meat perfectly fit for human consumption exist. It's quite difficult to bread these animals in vaste numbers while maintaining these natural aspects, and it's even harder to do at low cost. Here's where the cloning comes in -

    Surely if you can clone these animals once the science has been perfected at relatively low cost there wont be a need to pump the cloned animals with any 'unnatural' substances as they'll all inherit the original animals natural defenses and tastey meat?

    Maybe someone more knowledge could subtantiate this theory??

    ---------------------------------------------

    Nic,

    The copies do not remain the same. The DNA of any cell contains information on the strands that are 'dominant' and 'recessive'. Simply taking genetic material from a host and implanting it into an embyro does not guarantee that the offspring will be an exact copy. It is the slight differences in following generations which become more and more present as the clones are cloned (this will have to happen as the original host will eventually die).

    Take Bovine TB, there is no scietific evidence that any cow has the ability to combat the virus, hence why they are looking at culling at badgers. If a mother carries a calf whilst infected, the offspring development in the womb causes it's immune system to adapt to new virus's, an ability the parent lacks. It is during the gestation period that animals develop immune systems that can tolerate new virus's. No animal in existance today has the ability to resist all known and 'upcoming' diseases. This is the job of the offspring, to maintain the health and success of the species

    As respected as scientists are, everyone likes to exagerate their own abilities. We cannot control the random process of nature, previous cloning attempts have not been successfull, Dolly the sheep did not survive as long as the host and was not as healthy.

  • Comment number 97.

    94. At 11:48am on 26 Nov 2010, Nic121 wrote:

    "OK, despite my previous comments I have to accept that one viable issue has been raised against the idea of cloning:

    Having an entire herd cloned from one animal will increase the liklihood of the entire herd catching the same virus and dieing. I think that's quite a good arguement as to why cloning entire herds from the same animal is not good."

    The answer is simple. Don't clone from a single animal. Select the best 1000 and mix up their samples around the country/world.

  • Comment number 98.

    What are the long term results? Just because a small group of so called experts' say so? we in the u.k have a lack of any body with enough expertise to prove any bio engineering animals is safe to do any thing with, never mind eating them. maybe in about 2o years time.

  • Comment number 99.

    oh, and not to mention the clones will have to be kept in the exact same environment as the host to be true copies. So unless they are always inside, with the same light, amount of food, amount water, same exrecise level and same atmospheric conditions, they will not be copies of the original animal

  • Comment number 100.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

 

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