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Proposed ban welcomed on cloned farm animals in food chain

News that the European Commission has proposed a ban on cloned animals entering the food chain has been welcomed by Alyn Smith MEP.

The proposal seeks to provide legal certainty in this field, and will ban the use of cloning in the EU for farm animals (i.e. bovine, porcine, ovine, caprine and equine species) and the imports of these animal clones. The marketing of food from animal clones will also be prohibited.

Although the proposal does not address the commercialisation of cloned animals’ offspring (or “second generation” clones), it is hoped that the move signifies a renewed commitment on the part of the Commission to clamp down on all cloned products.

Alyn said:

“Five years ago, my European Parliament colleagues and I voted by a majority of 9 to 1 in favour of banning the commercialisation of cloned animals across the EU. The Commission’s latest proposal is therefore a belated but nonetheless welcome development in the long-running fight to keep these animals in our labs and out of our grocery stores.

"Whilst there are unlikely to be any commercially developed products of this kind in the EU in the very near future, it is right that we have the necessary legislative framework in place ahead of the game.

"As it stands, the case for cloned animals has not yet been made. There remain serious ethical questions and animal welfare concerns, as well as potential repercussions on genetic diversity and, until these are answered, I want to keep this technology safely in labs, not on our high streets."

The Commission announcement can be seen here -