Consumers and Animals Let Down by Failure to Ban Food From Cloning in the European Union

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Consumers and Animals Let Down by March 2011 Failure to Ban Food From Cloning in the European Union

[Ed. Note: Animal agriculture provides billions of dollars in profit.  Millions and millions of people continue to eat animal parts, pieces and secretions. More horrors than the unspeakable horrors already inflicted on both human and other-than-human animals with the results of cloning: by messing with their genes, their bone structures, their blood...every aspect of their physical bodies. With of course no regard for their personal needs and desires as living beings. For more you can read Genetic Engineering and Cloning in Animal Agriculture: Bioethical and Food Safety Concerns.]

By Eurogroup for Animals on European Vegetarian and Animal News Alliance (EVANA)

Cloning, a technique to reproduce identical animals is very controversial and opposed on ethical, animal welfare and health grounds, due to the many animals that die in the process and the suffering it causes during pregnancy and birth. Scientists agree that the health and welfare of a significant proportion of cloned animals is seriously affected and mortality is considerably higher than with sexually reproduced animals.

Eurogroup for Animals is deeply distressed that the European Parliament and European Council failed to find an agreement on the Novel Food Directive last night which will now allow the sale and import of food from cloned animals to continue unchecked against the wishes of Europe’s citizens and which will result in cloning physically taking place in the European Union.

Cloning, a technique to reproduce identical animals is very controversial and opposed on ethical, animal welfare and health grounds, due to the many animals that die in the process and the suffering it causes during pregnancy and birth. Scientists agree that the health and welfare of a significant proportion of cloned animals is seriously affected and mortality is considerably higher than with sexually reproduced animals.

The European Parliament remained strong on wanting a ban on cloning and on the sales of food from cloned animals including their offspring. The Member States, scared by the Commission that this would create a huge trade war disagreed to include the offspring in the legislation. But failing to come to a compromise now has ended the revision of the Novel Food Legislation, leaving the old law in place with even less provisions to limit cloning for food.

“The finger must be pointed directly at the Commission which, during the whole legislative process has ignored the views of its own citizens and consumers while putting its trade relations with the US first. The legal obligation to pay full regard to animal welfare and the EU’s own law which does not allow reproduction techniques which cause animal suffering has simply been dismissed,” said Sonja van Tichelen,” Director of Eurogroup for Animals.

The Commission has repeated the arguments of the US lobby which has claimed that it would be impossible to trace meat, milk or any product coming from cloned animals and offspring. Putting pressure on member states by saying this would result in all imported meat being banned which is not compatible with trade rules. Traceability is achievable and is already a requirement for food safety so there is no need to ban all imports.

“We are very disappointed that the European Council and the Commission have not defended EU values and have not even tried to find a realistic compromise solution. It will now be up to the private sector, to the retailers to ban these unwanted products from their shops and we will continue to work to ensure that products from cloned animals or their offspring do not come on the market,” concluded Ms Van Tichelen.