Will new rules for biotech help GM livestock to market?

The Food and Drug Administration is finally getting around to drafting regulations that would allow genetically modified meat and milk to enter the U.S. food supply, the New York Times reports.

Companies and biotech researchers actually welcome the prospect of firm rules, because it would encourage investment after years of delay.

“Right now, it’s very hard to get any corporate investment,” said James D. Murray, a professor at the University of California, Davis, who developed the goats with the infection-fighting milk. “What studies do you need to do? What are they looking for?” he said, referring to government regulators. “That stuff’s not there.”

Researchers have come up with a wide variety of applications for genetic modification in livestock, including faster-growing salmon, pigs whose manure is less polluting, and goats’ milk with healthful properties. But it’s not clear if food companies, or their customers, will want the new products, even if they are approved.

One response to “Will new rules for biotech help GM livestock to market?

  1. I think the idea that firm rules by the FDA will solve all the woes relating to GM meat and milk is a bit over the top and your last line says it all to me. The problems with GMOs currently do not relate per se to getting approved. They relate to the public perception of GMOs. The “public” believe the environmental and health risks of GMOs are greater than the benefits. If people want new GMOs to be accepted, forget about working the FDA side of things. Work on making GMOs that benefit people and the environment not the patent owners and work on the public perception of biotechnology. And I think the investors will appreciate this as well – I know that if I were investing in companies making GMO meat and milk I would want to know that they are not just working on getting FDA approval but also on getting public support.

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