Probably not bad for you

I love the way the cautionary words of the government’s Chief Scientist are either being translated in, or ignored by, the media.

What Andrew Wadge actually said was (my emphasis):

‘The committee (Advisory Committee on Novel Foods and Processes) has confirmed that meat from cloned cattle (and the offspring of cloned cattle) shows no substantial difference to conventionally produced meat and milk and therefore it is unlikely to present a food safety risk.’

Is it possible to squeeze more caveats in to one sentence?

But the scary thing is that this sentence effectively opens the way for cloned meat to be sold, unlabelled as cloned meat, in the UK.

After what length of testing?

  • 1 year?
  • 2 years?
  • 5 years?
  • 10 years?
  • 25 years?


Six months.

That’s comforting, isn’t it? That’s less testing than Thalidomide had.

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3 Responses to Probably not bad for you

  1. Bulldog says:

    It appears that The Committee” have decided that each step in the cloning process has zero chance of error. That is, a clone of a clone of a clone of a clone of a cow has exactly the same characteristics as the original cow.

    In the terms of my profession, all measures of the resultant herd have a sigma of zero. I find that improbible (to coin a phrase).

    It gives new meaning to “You are what you eat.”

  2. Brennig says:

    You’re right of course, no-one seems to be considering the long view on this, and what the generational implications might be. I know that unidentified cloned meat has been sold in the US for a couple of years, but I was hoping that the UK would be rather more circumspect. To give this meat a green light after such no long-term research seems to be inviting risk.

  3. Vicola says:

    They’re scared of saying anything after the BSE thing decimated the British beef industry. One teeny suggestion that eating cloned cow might not be so good for you and people will start boycotting British beef in droves, because most of them are stupid and think avoiding altogether is safer than just doing a bit of research into where your meat comes from and whether it’s natural or not. So they’re saying nothing at all. I’ve got the same reservations as you, I don’t think it’s been tested for long enough and I don’t see how you can know the long term effects yet but I buy my meat from a local delivery company that collects from sourcable Cheshire and Lancashire farms so I know it isn’t cloned. I also know it is hormone and antibiotic free as well. I don’t trust supermarkets for meat, they are too concerned with the bottom line and don’t give a crap about quality, content or a fair deal for the farmer.