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US FDA Deems Cloned Animals Edible 598

Posted by kdawson
from the just-like-the-real-thing dept.
Coldeagle sends us the news that the US Food and Drug Administration has declared that meat from cloned animals is safe to eat. The agency decided that no labeling is necessary for meat or milk from cloned cows, pigs, or goats or their offspring. (Ironically the FDA didn't include cloned sheep in the announcement, claiming a lack of data, though the very first cloned animal was a sheep named Dolly.) The article notes that a couple of major food suppliers have already decided not to use any products of cloning, and that the groups opposed to cloning in the food chain will now concentrate their efforts on convincing more suppliers to boycott the business of cloning. The FDA noted that their focus groups and other public input indicated that about 1/3 of US citizens do not want food from cloned animals under any circumstances; another 1/3 have no objections; and another 1/3 fall somewhere in between.
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US FDA Deems Cloned Animals Edible

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  • by Dan East (318230) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @09:30PM (#22060648) Homepage Journal
    Will it cost half as much?

    Dan East
    • by airedalez (743328) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @09:35PM (#22060714)
      It actually is cost prohibitive right now...

      I doubt it will take long for it to become priced right for these companies.

      The real question is, how long is it before the average consumer becomes apathetic about buying and eatting cloned meat.
      • by mcpkaaos (449561) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @09:47PM (#22060884)
        The real question is, how long is it before the average consumer becomes apathetic about buying and eatting cloned meat.

        I believe that would be a cloned-chicken-or-the-egg argument. Sorry, couldn't resist.
        • by eonlabs (921625) on Wednesday January 16, 2008 @02:20AM (#22063220) Journal
          I don't care about cloned food. I care about genetically modified food.
          How many programmers do you know who have never put a bug in their code.
          We know how those languages work and can mathematically analyze their operation.

          There are so many interactions going on within an organism that we have little idea
          how the 'code' we decide to inject is going to behave. The significance of this is
          not in the animal or plant being modified, but in their offspring.

          The lack of restraint on GM food is ridiculous. Is anyone surprised the FDA allows
          cloned food if they allow GM food?
          • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 16, 2008 @06:01AM (#22064384)
            Those who object to genetically modified foods based on your argument are fooling themselves into thinking that this is a unique problem of GMOs. It is not. Firstly, we have been modifying the genes of foods for hundreds of years, through selective breeding, hybridization, mutation, and other techniques. Secondly, there are plentiful natural sources of genetic modification, from natural mutation to viral infection and natural hybridization to all kinds of other sources. Remember that nature created influenza, potato blight, anthrax, mad cow disease, AIDS, cancer, etc. It's only an irrational fear of industry and science which makes out the potential down sides of GMOs to be unique and uniquely damaging.

            Many people complain that we don't know with 100% certainty what will happen with genetically modified foods. But it's a mistake to think that we have ever had that sort of certainty concerning our foods, modified or not. And today with GMOs we have at least as much if not much more knowledge about our foods and the changes we're making to them as we ever have had.

            Also, I think many people discount the benefits of engineered foods too quickly. Without modern, engineered, high yield crops much of the world would be starving today.

            Certainly there's room for caution and rational skepticism, but it's silly for educated people in the 21st century to be imagining that Frankenstein is going to grow out of a corn field.
            • by rucs_hack (784150) on Wednesday January 16, 2008 @07:59AM (#22064940)
              From what I recall, the whole thing of GM crops was never to provide the well fed western world with extra food. We've already got more than we need.

              The original idea was robust crops that would work in the third world, where death from lack of food is an everyday occurrence.

              Alas for them the corporations discovered that it made cheap food that they could make good profits on, and the biotech companies realised this was an idea way to control farmers worldwide by forcing them to purchase a constant supply of (patented) seeds, not replanting with saved seeds as has been the practice since farming was first developed.

              Basically it went from a wonderful idea to just another way for money to be made.

              Someone else will have to find the cites for this if you want them.
      • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @09:54PM (#22060960)
        ...it's just that like most people, you don't understand how "cloned" meat is produced. A cow clone can cost upwards of $5,000, but no one eats that cow. A highly productive cow is cloned, then used as breed stock, just like any other animal with good attributes. It's the offspring that are used to produce meat and milk. Really, the entire argument looks puerile and pointless when people flap their mouths without knowing even the basic information.
        • by Skreems (598317) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @10:40PM (#22061446) Homepage
          I don't think people object to eating cloned meat if that were the only factor. At least, not the people who understand some basic science. I think the larger objection is that this will limit diversity in the gene pool even faster than current breeding already is. And we've seen how well that worked out for the banana in the 50s, when it was effectively cloned by horticultural methods.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Lord Ender (156273)

        The real question is, how long is it before the average consumer becomes apathetic about buying and eatting cloned meat.
        They already are. I don't care if the cow in my steak has a twin or not. Do you?
  • Cloning in nature (Score:3, Informative)

    by halcyon1234 (834388) <halcyon1234@hotmail.com> on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @09:31PM (#22060660) Journal
    Ever eaten a double-yolk egg? You've eaten a cloned animal. Same if you've ever eaten the twin sibling of any animal.

    And don't think you veggiesaurs are exempt. Have you ever eaten anything grown from a clipping of a plant? That's a clone.

    And don't get me started on the beer drinkers who are quaffing yeast pee...

    • by Elemenope (905108) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @09:40PM (#22060788)

      Yeah, I don't get it either. I mean, people being annoyed/apprehensive about GMO foods, that I get (the discomfort level, I mean, not the irrational fear that follows it). But clones? They're just twins, for goshsakes, a pretty common natural occurrence.

      • Re:Cloning in nature (Score:5, Interesting)

        by ppanon (16583) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @09:59PM (#22061030) Homepage Journal
        Sort of. It depends at what point the cloning process occurs. The thing about Dolly was that she was cloned from a mature adult and had inherited the genetic damage that the adult had accumulated in its lifetime (including shortened telomeres). So if they clone them early before a lot of genetic damage has happened to the template organism, OK. If they clone them later, it's not certain what that genetic damage might have lead to. Over multiple generations, that damage could add up and affect quality.

        In the long run, though, cloning your food animals is a bit of a cop out. It means you're trying to maximize your growth/production without establishing sufficient genetic diversity in your strain. As with cloned forests, you've got a highly homogeneous population that is much more susceptible to disease epidemics.

        But I admit it would be tempting if they could guarantee a perfect filet mignon every time.
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by Gordonjcp (186804)
          So if they clone them early before a lot of genetic damage has happened to the template organism, OK.

          Except that would miss the point entirely. You'd need to clone a lamb very shortly after it was born, at which point you wouldn't really know how it was going to turn out as an adult. I mean, yes, you can tell if a lamb is going to grow up to be a massively faulty sheep, but you've got no real idea how it's going to look in two years time. Lambs are pretty much just lambs.

          You could take samples of genet
      • Don't the telomeres change in the cloning process? From the wiki page on telomeres: [wikipedia.org]

        The telomere length varies in cloned animals. Sometimes the clones end up with shorter telomeres since the D.N.A. has already divided countless times. Occasionally, the telomeres in a clone's D.N.A. are longer because they get "reprogrammed". The clone's new telomeres combine with the old ones, giving it abnormally long telomeres.

        Now, what does this mean for cloned animals? I don't know, but they do kind of work as end caps on the DNA and if the telomeres wear out, the DNA starts to lose genetic information from the ends. This undoubtedly means the sheep will eventually turn into flesh eating zombie sheep whose meat turns humans into brain sucking zombies as well. Australia will be the first continent to go.

        Well, maybe not. Heck, I'm not too worried

    • by JollyRogerX (749524) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @09:45PM (#22060854)

      If you ate a double yolk egg, it was certainly not a cloned animal. Assuming you didn't eat a Balut [wikipedia.org] egg, the egg was unfertilized and thus not an animal at all.

      I think you meant to imply that eating a twin is the same as eating a clone. It is not. A clone implies that the animal has identical chromosomes to an already existing (adult or otherwise) animal. Twins (identical) share the same chromosomes because they came from the same zygote and split off in early development.

      You are right that some animals and plants are capable of cloning themselves, but no higher order animals and certainly no mammals. In light of the fact that people probably eat cloned fruit (cloned by humans), I can understand their uneasiness with eating cloned mammals.

      I would probably eat a cloned steak, but if given the choice, I would probably buy the un-cloned steak every time.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by dondelelcaro (81997)

        In light of the fact that people probably eat cloned fruit (cloned by humans), I can understand their uneasiness with eating cloned mammals.

        If you've ever eaten an orange, odds are you've had a clone. If you've ever drunk wine or grape juice, odds are that was a clone too. There's simply not many fruits that aren't clones of eachother, because what often makes a good tasting fruit doesn't make good root stock or high seedling yields. Most people just either don't know, or are so used to it that they don't

    • by Morosoph (693565) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @09:46PM (#22060864) Homepage Journal
      What you say is absolutely true, but is missing an important principle: the customer's right to reject a product on any brain-dead reason that they choose.

      Customers are expecting non-cloned meat; they're not expecting meat from an animal who resides in a barn with a north-facing door. Accordingly, it would be reasonable for them to know the former, but not the latter.

      I do hope that the FDA allow producers to label their meat non-cloned only if it isn't in fact cloned. Yes, scientific studies are important, but in the end, as with organic produce, the customer should at the very least not be lied to. For some, after all, they have an almost religious zeal in their choice. Would be accept non-kosher meat being sold as kosher? The health argument here misses the point.

    • by gstoddart (321705) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @10:31PM (#22061370) Homepage

      And don't think you veggiesaurs are exempt. Have you ever eaten anything grown from a clipping of a plant? That's a clone.

      I'm afraid you aren't understanding the distinction -- or, you're in fact trying to pretend there isn't one with that analogy. Either way, it's specious.

      A plant clipping will naturally re-grow, you don't really need to do much with it, because plants have evolved to propagate this way. Put the damned thing in water, and it grows. Hell, it's not even a clone, it's the same original plant essentially. We're cool with that.

      However, my limited understanding is that we introduce degradation and errors when we replilcate DNA of mammals. We simply haven't cloned enough animals, over enough generations to have any factual data that the original genes aren't getting slightly borked by the technology which is doing this. We think we know, but we don't.

      Hell, new data suggests that by the time a man is in his 70's the DNA in his sperm has degraded substantially. Make a clone of a cow, clone that, and then clone it again. Short of doing a hell of a lot of research, there is no evidence to support the claim this is safe. There is definitely evidence to suggest there is degradation in the genes of clones and the animals aren't as healthy.

      IMO, the FDA has said something is safe which they can't possibly know. And, they're doing it to support an industry which doesn't want to be compelled to label the origins of such things.

      There simply isn't enough long-term evidence to say it is safe, merely that we've not yet found any evidence that it isn't safe. For a lot of people, that doesn't meet the threshold of proof that we should be eating these things.

      Is it fear of the unknown? Possibly. But, how many things used to be considered absolutely safe until it had been around a while? I seem to recall they used to use pesticides on people and entire towns under the belief that it was safe. You need real, long-term data to make the positive assertion it is safe. I don't believe we have that. By the time you fuck with your food supply and find out that it wasn't safe, you're screwed.

      By all means, eat your cloned steak. But, I think they should be labelling it, and people should have the choice to buy it or not.

      Cheers
      • by kklein (900361) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @11:17PM (#22061798)

        Okay, you've illustrated how cloning might be bad for the organism that is cloned, but where you--and everyone wringing their hands about this--falter is by then suggesting that this has some sort of health impact on someone who eats it.

        Your stomach and small intestine have absolutely no interest whatsoever in the quality of food's DNA. It's just matter to be converted into glucose for cells to burn. To suggest otherwise is to suggest that your body somehow incorporates DNA, good or otherwise, into your body. If that were the case, I'd be a fish right about now, being that I eat some every single day (living in Japan). But last I checked, I was still a crap swimmer, and afraid of water to boot.

        To sum up, of course cloned animals are safe to eat. So are GM products. Pesticides, herbicides, growth hormones, antibiotics... Not so much. But animals and plants that do not produce toxins or aren't full of rocks or whatever? Absolutely fine.

        I simply cannot understand how so many people can problematize such a simple thing as digestion of organic matter. There are plenty of things to consider when talking about mass cloning and/or mass GM, but health most certainly is not one of them.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Vellmont (569020)

        A plant clipping will naturally re-grow, you don't really need to do much with it,

        I'm not really sure what "natural" means. It seems to have something to do with not being influenced or created by people. If that's the case, NONE of the food you eat on a daily basis is "natural", even the super-earth-friendly organic stuff, even something grown in your own garden. Basically all our food has been engineered by us for thousands of years, since agriculture began.

        However, my limited understanding is that we
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Phat_Tony (661117)
      Apples don't breed true. All commercial apples are clones. Every apple of a "variety" is a clone, unless it's one that came off the first tree ever that they used to found a new variety.

      Not only are they clones, but they're the "bad" kind of "adult" clones that inherit genetic damage. If you're against cloned food, never eat anything with apples in it.

      Some non-cloned, non-varietal mutt apples are pretty good, it's just hit-or-miss. If you're opposed to cloning, you can grow your own apples. Just plant
  • Edible (Score:5, Funny)

    by Tribbin (565963) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @09:31PM (#22060664) Homepage
    Edible like in snails, ants and blowfish edible?
    • Escargot is edible. And exspensive if that matters at all. Same with blowfish actually. Ants not so much. Besides, summary and article both say that the FDA doesn't just find them edible, but that they are safe to eat, and that they are in every way identical to uncloned meat.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Torvaun (1040898)
        Technically, ants are edible, but more trouble than it's worth under most circumstances. And if you get chocolate dipped honey ant, it's delicious.
  • I'd much rather... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Dance_Dance_Karnov (793804) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @09:32PM (#22060672) Homepage
    have cloned meat than meat pumped full of growth hormones.

    if cow A is good to eat, then a clone of cow A should be just as good to eat.
    • by couchslug (175151) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @09:49PM (#22060906)
      "have cloned meat than meat pumped full of growth hormones."

      The two are not mutually exclusive.
      • by gobbo (567674) <wrewrite AT gmail DOT com> on Wednesday January 16, 2008 @05:19AM (#22064196) Journal

        "have cloned meat than meat pumped full of growth hormones."

        The two are not mutually exclusive.

        Nice understatement.

        The real heart of the matter isn't "frankenfood" (though it's a marketing issue, for sure) or the inevitable genetic damage carried forward by the clones; it's the way that the food industry is becoming more capital intensive through ideological progress, vertical integration and conglomeration, and through designing a complex chain of pharmacological dependencies. All these things undermine your food security by replacing family farms (and local processors) with giant corporate systems that DO NOT have you or your community's best interests at heart.

        Cloned, monogenetic livestock herds will require Big Pharma to support them, they'll be susceptible to epidemics and genetic flaws. They will go hand in hand with methods of production that are over-scale and thus risky. They will be controlled by a very few corporate giants, and will further push farmers out of business, to be replaced by more of the same faceless institutions.

        I'm all for mass international corporate production--of electronics. Food, however, is different. Our food security requires

        • regional production in a diverse economic base of farmers and processors
        • people who care, and accountability (see above)
        • biodiversity of crops and in the supporting bioregion
        • a short line between field and table
        • crops and animal varieties that don't need intensive industrial supports
        • broad base of knowledge, and therefore more producers

        well, that's as a start. Food security isn't about stockpiling or having enough or locking your roommates out of the pocket pizzas. It's about integrating the food system into the regional economy and seeking better quality and diversity, it's about reliability and nutrition, and minimizing risks.

        Cloned livestock herds will work against food security, because of how they will be developed, produced, and owned. The so-called health issues are second to these concerns.

    • by wall0159 (881759) on Wednesday January 16, 2008 @06:09AM (#22064416)
      "if cow A is good to eat, then a clone of cow A should be just as good to eat."

      readers please observe the following disclaimer:

      "clone" does not mean "exact copy"
      "should": refers to ideal scenario only, and is not necessarily applicable to the real world
      "just as good": does not necessarily refer to consumer satisfaction

      IMO, the parent comment is just the sort of response you'd expect from a computer science crowd trying to comment on biological systems. Cloning a cow is not the same as cloning a partition on a hard disk.
  • by myowntrueself (607117) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @09:32PM (#22060676)
    When you find that one really *tasty* chicken... and you eat it... and its GONE?

    And never *never* will you find a chicken quite so tasty...?
  • by 3seas (184403) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @09:32PM (#22060680) Journal
    ... such that there are no degeneration of copies, then there are better things we can eat like HFCS filled foods..

    Seriously there are worse things to eat that the FDA has approved. But still, considering gene therapy is at hand, it does make me hold caution to ingesting something that may contain genetic issues.
    • by mandelbr0t (1015855) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @09:56PM (#22060988) Journal

      The genetic issues are confined to the animal. You can't screw up your own DNA by eating meat that has faulty DNA. I can think of a few possibilities that could happen down the line: genetic mutations in the cloned animals makes them more prone to disease. But, meat is already screened for human-communicable diseases, so nothing to worry about there, except that cloning may not prove to be a viable solution to making more livestock. Genetic mutations in the cloned animals cause them to grow differently, changing the quality of the meat. OK, that's something to be a bit concerned about, but grade A sirloin is grade A sirloin. I suppose if the taste was so different that it doesn't taste like cow, chicken, etc. any more they may need to start labeling stuff better (and show us pictures of the animals that are so freaky they don't taste like their ancestors any more). Cloned animals may not be able to reproduce. Of course, they don't really care about that since they're cloning instead of procreating.

      All in all, there's nothing to worry about, and labeling meat as 'CLONED' will just make it easier for consumers to boycott perfectly safe products. There's just too much mis-information about a lot of biotechnology and I don't think that enabling advocacy groups to spread a bunch of FUD is the best plan. If you feel that badly about it, buy a ranch and grow your own. I assume that you'll also go back to eating maize instead of corn -- octoploid genetic freak vegetables.

      • by WallyDrinkBeer (1136165) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @10:36PM (#22061412)
        Genetic issues are not confined to the animal. Cloning introduces many mutations, so many that most cloning efforts end up in non-viable organisms. Messed up genes produce messed up proteins. We already have diseases such as CJD/Mad Cow that stem from animal proteins - not a virus or bacteria - just an abnormal protein. Mad cow became such a problem because bad animal proteins were distributed to populations through feed. Just like the mad cow scandal, we won't find out until it's too late. One day, cloned beef experiment #1123, put in a million big macs, will be found to have a protein that causes another incurable brain disease.
  • That's ok (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Crowhead (577505) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @09:33PM (#22060694)
    I've been smoking cloned dope for years.
  • by garcia (6573) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @09:35PM (#22060718) Homepage
    This is the same FDA that allows beef growers to feed the parts of other cows (minus the brains and spinal cords) to other cows while they are packed in tightly and standing in their own piles of urine and feces because they can't move anywhere.

    This is the same FDA that has permitted plenty of E. coli outbreaks [google.com] because they refuse to put an end to unhealthy meat practices.

    This is the same FDA that bends to political pressure instead of caring about the health of the American public it is supposed to protect.

    What about hormones which possibly cause early puberty in girls? I could go on but I won't bother, we all know what we're putting into our bodies...

    Cloned beef may be safe but it's the practices that they allow outside of this that really suck and I wouldn't trust a fucking thing they approve and neither should you. If only that beef didn't taste SO good :(
  • No label? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mcpkaaos (449561) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @09:39PM (#22060778)
    That's very nice of the FDA to decide that the American public doesn't need to be told they are eating cloned meat. I feel free, don't you?
  • by MrLizard (95131) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @09:40PM (#22060780)
    ...when artificial insemination was first used for cattle, there was the same "moral panic" because, y'know, it was new and different and therefore SPOOOKY, and the same Usual Suspects were all up in arms over it, and, of course, it is now so accepted and commonplace no one even remembers there was an outrage.

    Hell, when the first smallpox vaccine was invented, there were very similair panics to what we see today over genetic engineering.

    People are stupid, but they are also easily distracted and forget last year's MAJOR CRISIS in favor of this year's equally all-consuming disaster.
    • ... People are stupid, but they are also easily distracted and forget last year's MAJOR CRISIS in favor of this year's equally all-consuming disaster.

      I'd agree with you, but eating Alar-treated apples [wikipedia.org] has so obviously turned us all into a bunch of blind, cancerous mutants, that we've all learned our lesson.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by fferreres (525414)
      1) The were scared when we detonated the first TNT bomb. They where even more scared when the atomic bomb showed up. They are now even scared about this 10000 megatons bombs we plan to send to the moon if everything goes well,as research shows. Your argument is silly, it doesn't matter if people are scared or not scared. The real problem is what will happen, and the implications of what we do: That we can only now guess (and having different scientific opinions does help).

      2) It was new and different and the
  • by Dragonshed (206590) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @09:43PM (#22060818)
    Cloned or not, as long as the animal in question lived a happy, healthy life prior to being slaughtered, I'll eat it. If I can't source it to a responsible supplier, I won't. /opinion
  • by Dan East (318230) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @09:43PM (#22060826) Homepage Journal
    Great. Now restaurants will stop letting people take their left-over steak home, for fear of having their custom cow breed cloned.

    Dan East
  • by heroine (1220) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @09:44PM (#22060834) Homepage
    Without diversity, entire food supplies can be wiped out by single diseases.
  • Dolly wasn't the first animal to be cloned, she was the first mammal to be cloned [wikipedia.org].
  • ...tastes EXACTLY like the one I had last week!
  • by SuperBanana (662181) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @09:48PM (#22060896)

    groups opposed to cloning in the food chain will now concentrate their efforts on convincing more suppliers to boycott the business of cloning

    If GMO grain and hormone-loaded-milk are any example, the industry is concentrating on keeping the FDA from requiring industry mark which meat is from cloned animals. *And* aggressively going after businesses that market food as NOT being cloned/GMO/hormone-loaded.

    It's absolutely hilarious to listen to the logic: "If we labeled it, people wouldn't buy it." Ho, really? No kidding, sherlock! That's how capitalism works. And guess what? 1/3rd of America doesn't want anything to do with you.

    I'm so tired of farmers and businessmen that are the first to yack about "freedom" but keep begging for the government to save them / prop them up. As more and more people start demanding organic foods, the non-organic foods will drop in price because demand drops. I'll bet anything that the non-organic agribusinesses will go running to Congress begging for larger handouts...

  • by Doc Ruby (173196) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @10:35PM (#22061410) Homepage Journal
    These clones are not genetically identical to uncloned animals. The newborn clone has the same depleted count of telomeres [wikipedia.org] that the fully-grown animal had when the clone's original tissue was taken from the original animal. But not the amount that a natural animal has when it's born. The adult clone will also have fewer telomeres in every cell than a natural adult.

    We don't know that those lowered telomere counts affect the tissue in any way that affects the eater. But we also don't know that it doesn't affect us. We do know that the animals die much younger, because telomere countdowns are directly reflected in the aging process. So a "middle aged" cloned sheep is really like an old natural sheep. And there could very well be many other effects, some of which are much more subtle, some of which could be unhealthy. The FDA should not even allow sale of these animals for food until their hazards are disproven.

    But we won't even be able to tell the basic difference by looking at the label. Because the food industry doesn't want us to know, because they have their reasons for cloning that have nothing to do with our health or safety.

    That's shows what's unnatural about our government that's protecting these industries, rather than letting us decide how to protect ourselves, when the FDA won't.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Qubit (100461)

      But we also don't know that it doesn't affect us...there could very well be many other effects, some of which are much more subtle, some of which could be unhealthy. The FDA should not even allow sale of these animals for food until their hazards are disproven.

      Until their hazards are disproven? I'm not sure that it's scientifically possible to do that...
  • Nature tells us... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by AugstWest (79042) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @10:36PM (#22061418)
    ...that Variety is good. Keep mixing the gene pool, keep everything mixing as much as possible.

    When that stops, trouble starts. It's that simple.
  • Label it at least! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by globaljustin (574257) <justinglobal@gmB ... minus physicist> on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @11:00PM (#22061656) Homepage Journal
    Genetically modified food, particularly meat from cloned animals, should be labeled if the FDA must approve it for sale.

    This is a consumer rights issue.

    All up and down this post, geneticists and biology teachers have been going on and on about telomeres and banana clones and blah blah blah...the fact is, meat from a cloned animal is NOT the same as meat from an animal born as a twin. The long term consequences of narrowing genetic diversity in biological food product (what cows have become) could have very nasty consequences.

    The FDA did their studies and approved cloned meat. Fine by me, but we have the right to know WHAT we are eating...especially in regards to this issue.
  • by ignoramus (544216) on Tuesday January 15, 2008 @11:19PM (#22061816) Homepage

    though the very first cloned animal was a sheep named Dolly

    What?

    Dolly was the first mammal to be cloned from an adult somatic cell. I think the first cloned animal (if you don't, not counting bacteria and other things that do it on their own) was a tadpole in the 1950s.

  • Public Opinion (Score:3, Interesting)

    by serutan (259622) <snoopdougNO@SPAMgeekazon.com> on Wednesday January 16, 2008 @04:02AM (#22063796) Homepage
    1/3 don't want any part of it
    1/3 think it's ok
    1/3 are somewhere in the middle

    And maybe 1 in 1000 know enough to have a meaningful opinion at all.

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