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EU Bans Farm Animal Cloning and Sale of Cloned Meat

30 DEC 2013

This week, the AAPS blog examines a new proposal from the European Commission to ban the cloning of farm animals throughout the EU. The proposed legislation also restricts the importation of cloned meat into the Union from countries like the US and Canada who have no such ban in place. The blog post, EU Bans Farm Animal Cloning and Sale of Clone Meat reflects that

With global challenges of poverty and scarcity, it’s hard to imagine governments thinking twice about embracing new sources of food supply.  But that is exactly what is happening throughout the European Union (EU) this month with regard to farm animal cloning.  The European Commission, the EU’s executive arm in Brussels is pushing for a ban on domestic animal cloning and any importation of cloned meat. EU Health Commissioner Tonio Borg describes the proposed regulation as “a ban on the technique, a ban on imports of the cloned animals themselves and a ban on food, milk or meat from the cloned animals.”

Even though the pressing issue of world hunger presents a compelling case for embracing cloned meat and the genetic engineering of farm animals, the EU is asking governments to consider perhaps the even more grave implication of replicating living creatures. The Commission cites both health and ethical concerns regarding the practice of animal cloning – a practice that is already in progress in Canada and the United States. So far, no food producer or retailer has applied for permission to sell cloned meat, so the proposed law is really just an attempt to buy time so the EU can study the process further and develop effective modes of regulation.