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US FDA Deems Cloned Animals Edible

kdawson posted more than 6 years ago | from the just-like-the-real-thing dept.

Government 598

Coldeagle sends us the news that the US Food and Drug Administration has declared that meat from cloned animals is safe to eat. The agency decided that no labeling is necessary for meat or milk from cloned cows, pigs, or goats or their offspring. (Ironically the FDA didn't include cloned sheep in the announcement, claiming a lack of data, though the very first cloned animal was a sheep named Dolly.) The article notes that a couple of major food suppliers have already decided not to use any products of cloning, and that the groups opposed to cloning in the food chain will now concentrate their efforts on convincing more suppliers to boycott the business of cloning. The FDA noted that their focus groups and other public input indicated that about 1/3 of US citizens do not want food from cloned animals under any circumstances; another 1/3 have no objections; and another 1/3 fall somewhere in between.

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What consumers really want to know... (4, Funny)

Dan East (318230) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060648)

Will it cost half as much?

Dan East

Re:What consumers really want to know... (5, Insightful)

airedalez (743328) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060714)

It actually is cost prohibitive right now...

I doubt it will take long for it to become priced right for these companies.

The real question is, how long is it before the average consumer becomes apathetic about buying and eatting cloned meat.

Re:What consumers really want to know... (4, Funny)

mcpkaaos (449561) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060884)

The real question is, how long is it before the average consumer becomes apathetic about buying and eatting cloned meat.

I believe that would be a cloned-chicken-or-the-egg argument. Sorry, couldn't resist.

It's Not Cost Prohibitive... (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22060960)

...it's just that like most people, you don't understand how "cloned" meat is produced. A cow clone can cost upwards of $5,000, but no one eats that cow. A highly productive cow is cloned, then used as breed stock, just like any other animal with good attributes. It's the offspring that are used to produce meat and milk. Really, the entire argument looks puerile and pointless when people flap their mouths without knowing even the basic information.

Re:It's Not Cost Prohibitive... (1)

Seumas (6865) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061272)

Yes, but the fact is that you are still investing a lot of money into the initial stock of cloned cows. Though spread out over however many births, that may not be a significant amount.

Also, it's not actually $5,000. The figure I saw quoted on several reports today was more along the line of $20,000 per cloned animal.

Re:What consumers really want to know... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22060750)

1/3 of us will want to know whether it costs half as much; 1/3 of us will want to know if tastes twice as good; and another 1/3 fall somewhere in between.

Re:What consumers really want to know... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22060992)

I think you should be able to pay for cloned food with photocopied money.

Re:What consumers really want to know... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22061212)

I could be funny, but the real money is just that printed paper copies.

OT: 25 replies? (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22061000)

WTF? Every topic on the main page has "25 comments", and the drop-downs that enable non-logged-in users to change from Threaded->Flat (and the other drop-down to set the Threshold) have vanished.

What's going on, and is there any way of stopping it? /. used to gracefully fall back to the classic system for non-Javascript-enabled browsers, and used to be usable from within on Lynx. It now fails... ungracefully.

Any chance we could revert whatever change happened today?

Re:OT: 25 replies? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22061202)

Probably a firehose thing.

Re:OT: 25 replies? (1)

ookabooka (731013) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061232)

I see banner ads now whenever I click a comment to expand it, don't recall that being there before, maybe it's that. Also, in protest of the new banner ads, I click every single one, I encourage you to do the same.

Re:OT: 25 replies? (5, Funny)

Spy der Mann (805235) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061264)

WTF? Every topic on the main page has "25 comments"

Ahh... the cloning technology has arrived to Slashdot!

Re:What consumers really want to know... (1)

psychicsword (1036852) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061280)

Just tell me when they become huge [wikipedia.org]

Continue to Oppose? (1, Flamebait)

The Lone Man (1017800) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060654)

I'd imagine the opposition groups will start losing much of their leverage given the fact that the meat's been deemed no different from ordinary meat.

Re:Continue to Oppose? (3, Insightful)

marcello_dl (667940) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061194)

But it is different from ordinary meat. The difference is you basically always eat the same animal. Where's the problem? Same as pesticides: in nature we were used to eat different fruit each developing its own chemicals (self made pesticides). Now we always eat the same chemicals. Next we'll eat the same few animals. I consider it a potential long term risk. Our body becomes accustomed to deal with a reduced variety of stuff.

And this in the best case scenario where the makers of the animal don't try to squeeze every penny from its genome by feeding us the meat of the beast that grows faster with the less food no matter how healthy it is.

Anyway, in a free state people would be free to choose, even if choice comes from silly reasons. Most of consumer choices are dictated by stimuli which are engineered by advertising and PR. Prohibiting to label the food as cloned or not is fascist.

What if Microsoft got the state to prevent laptop makers to say what OS is in their laptops, XP, Vista, Mac or Linux, so that people are forced to get more of Vista?

Cloning in nature (3, Informative)

halcyon1234 (834388) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060660)

Ever eaten a double-yolk egg? You've eaten a cloned animal. Same if you've ever eaten the twin sibling of any animal.

And don't think you veggiesaurs are exempt. Have you ever eaten anything grown from a clipping of a plant? That's a clone.

And don't get me started on the beer drinkers who are quaffing yeast pee...

Re:Cloning in nature (3, Insightful)

Elemenope (905108) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060788)

Yeah, I don't get it either. I mean, people being annoyed/apprehensive about GMO foods, that I get (the discomfort level, I mean, not the irrational fear that follows it). But clones? They're just twins, for goshsakes, a pretty common natural occurrence.

Re:Cloning in nature (5, Interesting)

ppanon (16583) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061030)

Sort of. It depends at what point the cloning process occurs. The thing about Dolly was that she was cloned from a mature adult and had inherited the genetic damage that the adult had accumulated in its lifetime (including shortened telomeres). So if they clone them early before a lot of genetic damage has happened to the template organism, OK. If they clone them later, it's not certain what that genetic damage might have lead to. Over multiple generations, that damage could add up and affect quality.

In the long run, though, cloning your food animals is a bit of a cop out. It means you're trying to maximize your growth/production without establishing sufficient genetic diversity in your strain. As with cloned forests, you've got a highly homogeneous population that is much more susceptible to disease epidemics.

But I admit it would be tempting if they could guarantee a perfect filet mignon every time.

Re:Cloning in nature (1)

microbee (682094) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061278)

The thing about Dolly was that she was cloned from a mature adult and had inherited the genetic damage that the adult had accumulated in its lifetime

But it also inherited all the generic improvements! Like, knowing where to pee and how to date.

Problems with telomeres in clones (2, Funny)

spun (1352) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061248)

Don't the telomeres change in the cloning process? From the wiki page on telomeres: [wikipedia.org]

The telomere length varies in cloned animals. Sometimes the clones end up with shorter telomeres since the D.N.A. has already divided countless times. Occasionally, the telomeres in a clone's D.N.A. are longer because they get "reprogrammed". The clone's new telomeres combine with the old ones, giving it abnormally long telomeres.
Now, what does this mean for cloned animals? I don't know, but they do kind of work as end caps on the DNA and if the telomeres wear out, the DNA starts to lose genetic information from the ends. This undoubtedly means the sheep will eventually turn into flesh eating zombie sheep whose meat turns humans into brain sucking zombies as well. Australia will be the first continent to go.

Well, maybe not. Heck, I'm not too worried. Modern breeders of every sort of food animal or pet already have plenty of experience with the effects of too much inbreeding on their stock, I don't think the addition of this tool to their kit will confuse them to the point that it damages the species or anything. If the stock becomes non-viable, they will discontinue the method and reintroduce other genetic lines.

In my opinion, absolute worst case scenario, world wide sheep production dips for a few years when some horrible side effect is first noticed. The price of lamb, mutton, and wool goes up for a while. Then wild and heirloom stocks are reintroduced, the problem is solved, and we move on.

But you have to admit, now there's a teeny tiny part of you that's worried about zombie sheep. ;-)

Re:Cloning in nature (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22060800)

the difference is that we don't care what you say. don't think we find your little remarks insightful. go back to watching the science channel and come back when you have a clue. you're not as smart as a 5th grader. you're a sack of crap.
 
btw: the veggies think you're a fucking asshole.

Re:Cloning in nature (1)

alx5000 (896642) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061060)

Tough audience, indeed...

Re:Cloning in nature (5, Insightful)

JollyRogerX (749524) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060854)

If you ate a double yolk egg, it was certainly not a cloned animal. Assuming you didn't eat a Balut [wikipedia.org] egg, the egg was unfertilized and thus not an animal at all.

I think you meant to imply that eating a twin is the same as eating a clone. It is not. A clone implies that the animal has identical chromosomes to an already existing (adult or otherwise) animal. Twins (identical) share the same chromosomes because they came from the same zygote and split off in early development.

You are right that some animals and plants are capable of cloning themselves, but no higher order animals and certainly no mammals. In light of the fact that people probably eat cloned fruit (cloned by humans), I can understand their uneasiness with eating cloned mammals.

I would probably eat a cloned steak, but if given the choice, I would probably buy the un-cloned steak every time.

Re:Cloning in nature (1)

JebusIsLord (566856) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061004)

Okay new example: Probiotic yogurt contains bacteria, and bacteria is (always?) cloned.

Can we stick to the actual, relevant issues? Like meat pumped full of hormones that may or may not be bioactive in humans? Pesticides that we know cause disease? Don't get sidetracked!

Re:Cloning in nature (2, Informative)

dondelelcaro (81997) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061038)

In light of the fact that people probably eat cloned fruit (cloned by humans), I can understand their uneasiness with eating cloned mammals.

If you've ever eaten an orange, odds are you've had a clone. If you've ever drunk wine or grape juice, odds are that was a clone too. There's simply not many fruits that aren't clones of eachother, because what often makes a good tasting fruit doesn't make good root stock or high seedling yields. Most people just either don't know, or are so used to it that they don't think about it.

It's not like there's anything magical about cloning anyway; done properly, you've got the same genetic material producing a fairly similar organism.

Re:Cloning in nature (4, Insightful)

Morosoph (693565) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060864)

What you say is absolutely true, but is missing an important principle: the customer's right to reject a product on any brain-dead reason that they choose.

Customers are expecting non-cloned meat; they're not expecting meat from an animal who resides in a barn with a north-facing door. Accordingly, it would be reasonable for them to know the former, but not the latter.

I do hope that the FDA allow producers to label their meat non-cloned only if it isn't in fact cloned. Yes, scientific studies are important, but in the end, as with organic produce, the customer should at the very least not be lied to. For some, after all, they have an almost religious zeal in their choice. Would be accept non-kosher meat being sold as kosher? The health argument here misses the point.

Re:Cloning in nature (1)

Bartab (233395) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061014)

Customers are expecting non-cloned meat

And they're going to continue to get it for the forseeable future. Cloned animals are 10x-20x as expensive, you won't be seeing them on a grill anytime soon.

What you will see is offspring of clones, and milk products from clones. You'll be seeing both without mandatory markings.

Would be accept non-kosher meat being sold as kosher?

Interesting you would bring that up, because the arguments against cloned animal products are exactly as logical, thought out, and self-consistent as kosher meat. In other words: Dogma and mythology .

The -really- amusing thing is that you as alike as the question of cloned meat and kosher meat is, you're complaining that they're being treated the same. Nobody requires either non-kosher or kosher meat to be marketed as such. Kosher meat is available, and marked as such, because there is a market for it, and producers are able to charge extra for it.

Re:Cloning in nature (1)

ChromeAeonium (1026952) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061008)

Same word, different meaning. Double egged yolks and plant clippings are pretty different than a cloned animal. Double egged yolks are, first off, probably unfertilized, and even if they were, they'd be twins, not clones. As for plants, all fruit we eat(except for fruit that grows quickly, like tomatoes and cucumbers) is a select strain grafted onto a rootstock. All Bartlett pears, for example, are genetically identical, and its called clonal propagation, but they're not clones in this sense.

I'm not saying I fear meat cloned in this way, in fact, it is probably for the best because now we can have genetically superior strains of cow/chicken/pig/whatever that have been selected for specific traits (like flavor, immune system, growth rate, ect) just like we pick select cultivars of plants. I'm just saying that asexually propagated plant clones and animal clones are different types of clones.

mass cloning, loss of genetic diversity (1)

SuperBanana (662181) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061082)

Ever eaten a double-yolk egg? You've eaten a cloned animal. Same if you've ever eaten the twin sibling of any animal. And don't think you veggiesaurs are exempt. Have you ever eaten anything grown from a clipping of a plant? That's a clone.

You're missing the point; we're not talking about single isolated cases of cloning. We're talking about ten years from now, having virtually every head of cattle genetically identical to the one next to it.

Think it through: why would the industry want to clone? Because they want to develop a "perfect" cow, steer, chicken, turkey. Then patent it. Then sell or "license" it to farmers.

Now, it's not very convenient for your product to be capable of replication, so they'd probably be sterile. Joe Farmer is now dependent on CloneCow Corp for his animals. And maybe it turns out that they're not QUITE 100% sterile, so the artificial population starts to mix into the natural gene pool? Think it couldn't happen? Wrong, because both have happened with GMO grains.

To top it off, there's no genetic diversity, so the entire population is identically vulnerable in terms of disease susceptibility, or defective in terms of their bodies.

Imagine that ten-year-off scenario. What if one day it's discovered that they're vulnerable to some strain of a particular virus that is rapidly spreading? And by "they", I mean ALL of them?

Re:Cloning in nature (1)

dl107227 (632747) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061234)

A double yolk egg would not be a clone. If fertilized it would be a case of fraternal twins. Each yolk is the product of meiosis. Of course if one egg resulted in two undersized yolks then the mother's genetic material would be be the same but they would be fertilized by two different sperm.

Re:Cloning in nature (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22061258)

Ever eaten a double-yolk egg? You've eaten a cloned animal.

Was that clone a member of a gigantic industrial monoculture herd?

No, I thought not.

Only an arrogant idiot would say, "Cloned meat has no health problems, therefore no one could possibly want to avoid it."

Monoculture is already a major risk in world-wide food production. Cloning has the potential to make it much, much worse. Look at the history of the banana industry if you aren't so arrogant that you think what "makes sense to you" is more important than empirical fact.

This is the thing that really, really irritates me (can you tell) about pro-cloning folks: they are so stupid that they think food safety is the only imaginable issue anyone would have with it.

In fairness, most of the anti-cloning people are equally stupid, and the important issue gets totally lost in the noise of arrogant idiots screaming at each other. Which pretty much describes the 'net, I guess.

Edible (4, Funny)

Tribbin (565963) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060664)

Edible like in snails, ants and blowfish edible?

Re:Edible (1)

icegreentea (974342) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060872)

Escargot is edible. And exspensive if that matters at all. Same with blowfish actually. Ants not so much. Besides, summary and article both say that the FDA doesn't just find them edible, but that they are safe to eat, and that they are in every way identical to uncloned meat.

Re:Edible (2, Interesting)

Torvaun (1040898) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061046)

Technically, ants are edible, but more trouble than it's worth under most circumstances. And if you get chocolate dipped honey ant, it's delicious.

Labeling (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22060666)

Similarly to how "organic" labeling costs more at the store than non-organic, I imagine "non-cloned" meats will be labeled as such, and likewise cost more.

Re:Labeling (1)

zarthrag (650912) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061220)

You might be on to something, coward. The FDA would then have to enact rules to keep cloned meat from being presented as "Non-Cloned", and enjoying the business of the "loyal" 1/3.

I'd much rather... (4, Interesting)

Dance_Dance_Karnov (793804) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060672)

have cloned meat than meat pumped full of growth hormones.

if cow A is good to eat, then a clone of cow A should be just as good to eat.

Re:I'd much rather... (5, Insightful)

couchslug (175151) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060906)

"have cloned meat than meat pumped full of growth hormones."

The two are not mutually exclusive.

Re:I'd much rather... (1)

Dance_Dance_Karnov (793804) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060948)

I know that, but given the choice.

Re:I'd much rather... (1)

Nos. (179609) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061104)

I think that's the idea, unfortunately its not that simple. If cow A.orig is raised on grain, and cow A.clone1 is raised on "other" nutrition, the meat will be affected. Assuming the two cows are raised under similar conditions, and the meat is butchered the same way, and served the same way, they should have a similar taste and texture.

That being said, I buy a hind quarter every 1-2 years from a butcher. Not cloned cows, but cows from the same herd. The meat is indistinguishable from one year to the next. IMHO, its more about how the cow is raised and butchered than anything.

Re:I'd much rather... (2, Interesting)

Dance_Dance_Karnov (793804) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061180)

this also is true, but I don't see why clones would be raised any different. now, if they were just doing something like vat growing muscles and feeding them a "nutrient solution" I think a little more research would be needed.

Re:I'd much rather... (1)

Nos. (179609) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061270)

Well, there'll be the marketing aspect of selling the cloned cows to other breeders etc. because of its superior taste and tenderness and such. Being handled by a different rancher will lead to a completely different up bringing, which I think will result in a completely different piece of beef in the end.

Re:I'd much rather... (1)

pabrown85 (1128059) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061110)

I believe it's Cow A and Cow A'. So would that make it USDA Prime Prime?

Will this be the end of... (3, Funny)

myowntrueself (607117) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060676)

When you find that one really *tasty* chicken... and you eat it... and its GONE?

And never *never* will you find a chicken quite so tasty...?

Until they get cloning right.... (3, Informative)

3seas (184403) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060680)

... such that there are no degeneration of copies, then there are better things we can eat like HFCS filled foods..

Seriously there are worse things to eat that the FDA has approved. But still, considering gene therapy is at hand, it does make me hold caution to ingesting something that may contain genetic issues.

Re:Until they get cloning right.... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22060916)

You do realize your "replicative fading" you fucking trekkie, would take the form of early old age right? You're aware that all of a sudden the cloned cows aren't going to be made out of toxic ammino acids right? You're aware that just because Star Trek treats technology like magic, that in the real world technology isn't actually magic and is constrained by the laws of the natural world right, yes?

Re:Until they get cloning right.... (1)

Rakishi (759894) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060974)

Since every single creature has tons of random genetic mutations compared to it's parent I take it you don't eat anything living, right?

Re:Until they get cloning right.... (1)

Ironsides (739422) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061276)

Of course not. By the time an animal hits my plate, it's dead. It's not always cooked (sushi), but it sure is dead.

Re:Until they get cloning right.... (4, Informative)

mandelbr0t (1015855) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060988)

The genetic issues are confined to the animal. You can't screw up your own DNA by eating meat that has faulty DNA. I can think of a few possibilities that could happen down the line: genetic mutations in the cloned animals makes them more prone to disease. But, meat is already screened for human-communicable diseases, so nothing to worry about there, except that cloning may not prove to be a viable solution to making more livestock. Genetic mutations in the cloned animals cause them to grow differently, changing the quality of the meat. OK, that's something to be a bit concerned about, but grade A sirloin is grade A sirloin. I suppose if the taste was so different that it doesn't taste like cow, chicken, etc. any more they may need to start labeling stuff better (and show us pictures of the animals that are so freaky they don't taste like their ancestors any more). Cloned animals may not be able to reproduce. Of course, they don't really care about that since they're cloning instead of procreating.

All in all, there's nothing to worry about, and labeling meat as 'CLONED' will just make it easier for consumers to boycott perfectly safe products. There's just too much mis-information about a lot of biotechnology and I don't think that enabling advocacy groups to spread a bunch of FUD is the best plan. If you feel that badly about it, buy a ranch and grow your own. I assume that you'll also go back to eating maize instead of corn -- octoploid genetic freak vegetables.

Cloned meat and tansgenic animals (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22060682)

Website describe process of creating cloned and transgenic (genetically modified) meat animals. [myminicity.fr] Make them grow faster, solve world hunger.

Excellent! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22060686)

Next step: Approval of vat-grown meat [slashdot.org]

Glad I'm a veg (0, Flamebait)

jmusits (727995) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060688)

Considering the fact that I am a vegetarian, this just goes to show why I don't trust the FDA.

Re:Glad I'm a veg (1)

Kozar_The_Malignant (738483) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060782)

Considering the fact that I am a vegetarian, this just goes to show why I don't trust the FDA.

I am quite sure you have eaten many clones. Humans have been cultivating and eating cloned fruits and vegetables for many centuries.

Re:Glad I'm a veg (1)

Deflatamouse! (132424) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060808)

I'm glad too... more meat for me. :)

As if the FDA doesn't control veggies...
Besides, clones are not restricted to animals. In the world of plants more freaky genetic things happen.

Re:Glad I'm a veg (1, Funny)

Bartab (233395) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060814)

Whenever a vegetarian bloviates on about how they never eat meat and only eat lettuce, I wonder how they will taste when society collapses and the rest of us to turn them as our protein source.

Re:Glad I'm a veg (1, Informative)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060832)

haha, so your aware much of the fruit and veg you eat comes from cuttings which are nothing more then clones?

oh, but i only eat organic vegtables i hear you say? hate to break it to you but there's plenty of organic things that are deadly or more so then non organic....

Re:Glad I'm a veg (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22061016)

I'm a gardener and I "clone" plants all the time. We call it vegetative propagation. African violets grown from leaf cuttings, shrubs grown from stem cuttings, etc.. Read about it http://forums.gardenweb.com/forums/propa/ [gardenweb.com]

Cloned beef? Why not? And after it's slaughtered, irradiate it!

That's ok (5, Funny)

Anonymous Crowhead (577505) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060694)

I've been smoking cloned dope for years.

The FDA Approves Shit Anyway (5, Interesting)

garcia (6573) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060718)

This is the same FDA that allows beef growers to feed the parts of other cows (minus the brains and spinal cords) to other cows while they are packed in tightly and standing in their own piles of urine and feces because they can't move anywhere.

This is the same FDA that has permitted plenty of E. coli outbreaks [google.com] because they refuse to put an end to unhealthy meat practices.

This is the same FDA that bends to political pressure instead of caring about the health of the American public it is supposed to protect.

What about hormones which possibly cause early puberty in girls? I could go on but I won't bother, we all know what we're putting into our bodies...

Cloned beef may be safe but it's the practices that they allow outside of this that really suck and I wouldn't trust a fucking thing they approve and neither should you. If only that beef didn't taste SO good :(

Re:The FDA Approves Shit Anyway (2, Informative)

turtledawn (149719) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060784)

You're thinking the Department of Agriculture, not the FDA.

Re:The FDA Approves Shit Anyway (2, Informative)

Adambomb (118938) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060862)

No he isn't [fda.gov] .

Re:The FDA Approves Shit Anyway (2, Funny)

dotancohen (1015143) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061062)

What about hormones which possibly cause early puberty in girls?
I've always been a fan of the FDA's finer, more subtle, accomplishments such as this.

In related news........ (1)

edwardpickman (965122) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061084)

Cattle go on strike refusing to be eaten until their conditions dramatically improve.

No label? (4, Insightful)

mcpkaaos (449561) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060778)

That's very nice of the FDA to decide that the American public doesn't need to be told they are eating cloned meat. I feel free, don't you?

Re:No label? (0, Troll)

Bartab (233395) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060874)

Yes, it is nice, as they're following the law.

The FDA relies on science, not the variety of cultural and social issues people like to make up in order to claim that the gov't isn't watching out for them.

Frequently its the same people who declare that the gov't should get "it's nose out of my business" when regulating things like recreational drugs. Time to toke up and whine about the cloned cattle!

Re:No label? (1)

mcpkaaos (449561) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061106)

I understand what you said in the first line. What post were you responding to after that?

Re:No label? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22061192)

Your invisible tags.

This has all happened before... (5, Insightful)

MrLizard (95131) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060780)

...when artificial insemination was first used for cattle, there was the same "moral panic" because, y'know, it was new and different and therefore SPOOOKY, and the same Usual Suspects were all up in arms over it, and, of course, it is now so accepted and commonplace no one even remembers there was an outrage.

Hell, when the first smallpox vaccine was invented, there were very similair panics to what we see today over genetic engineering.

People are stupid, but they are also easily distracted and forget last year's MAJOR CRISIS in favor of this year's equally all-consuming disaster.

Re:This has all happened before... (1)

Kozar_The_Malignant (738483) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060868)

... People are stupid, but they are also easily distracted and forget last year's MAJOR CRISIS in favor of this year's equally all-consuming disaster.

I'd agree with you, but eating Alar-treated apples [wikipedia.org] has so obviously turned us all into a bunch of blind, cancerous mutants, that we've all learned our lesson.

Re:This has all happened before... (1)

dunelin (111356) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061076)

Who says cloning even involves genetic engineering. In a lot of ways, it's just like making a twin of the organism it's coming from. Oh dear, this means that twins are actually genetically engineered! A dicto secundum quid ad dictum simpliciter. [wikipedia.org] Or something like that.

Re:This has all happened before... (1)

QuickFox (311231) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061088)

People are stupid,
It's not the people who are stupid, it's the media who whip up scares. They love a scare and will do everything they can to mislead the public into believing that there's cause for concern. This sells papers and attracts viewers twice, first when whipping up the panic, and later when debunking it.

Okay, people are stupid too, for not choosing honest media, voting with their dollars. Speaking of media dishonesty, see my sig.

If the FDA still trustworthy? (1)

dbmacg (527469) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060794)

100 years ago, the FDA was an honorable organization that looked out for the public interest. Do they still have this function?

Freerange/Organic more important imo (4, Interesting)

Dragonshed (206590) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060818)

Cloned or not, as long as the animal in question lived a happy, healthy life prior to being slaughtered, I'll eat it. If I can't source it to a responsible supplier, I won't. /opinion

Re:Freerange/Organic more important imo (1)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060926)

I agree to the extent that cruel practices like branding and keeping reasonibly intelligent animals like cows and pigs in very confined spaces shouldn't be allowed (the meat also tastes better if they get to run around), but really how exactly do you get to know that an animal lived a happy life? did you get to talk to the cow before you eat him? did they give it a freaking name or something?

you have to remmeber that many animals just don't give a fuck how they live as long as they get to eat and screw eg. chickens and fish.

Re:Freerange/Organic more important imo (1)

RincewindTVD (1011435) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061214)

I used to only eat named meat, it makes it alot easier to tell that it's had a happy life. Algernon the pig loved apples when you fed them to him, Dinner the cow romped around with siblings Lunch and Breakfast. and yeah, they taste a lot better, and lived a longer time.

Re:Freerange/Organic more important imo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22061256)

It's not at all difficult to tell if many animals are stressed by their environment. I can certainly tell that our flock of chickens is happier when they get to spend the day outside scratching and sunning themselves versus being inside (cooped up if you will). They most certainly give a fuck how they live. Even moreso with cattle.

Re:Freerange/Organic more important imo (1)

iminplaya (723125) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061108)

Just remember this. It's either them or us [blogger.com]

Re:Freerange/Organic more important imo (1)

dotancohen (1015143) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061118)

Cloned or not, as long as the animal in question lived a happy, healthy life prior to being slaughtered, I'll eat it.
With just three replacement words, that would make an excellent Hamas motto.

Natural causes (1)

flyingfsck (986395) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061148)

So, would you rather eat a cow that died of natural causes?

Re:Freerange/Organic more important imo (1)

adminstring (608310) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061252)

Numerous investigations [cok.net] have shown that "Free range" and "animal care certified" are often fraudulent terms. "Free range" animals may have never seen real sunlight, been subjected to painful debeaking, overcrowding, and disease.

Confinement and slaughter of animals is inherently cruel. It's pretty simple - if it had eyes and a brain, it probably didn't want to have its throat cut so you could be spared the inconvenience of having to order a veggie burger.

No more doggy bags (4, Funny)

Dan East (318230) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060826)

Great. Now restaurants will stop letting people take their left-over steak home, for fear of having their custom cow breed cloned.

Dan East

Re:No more doggy bags (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22061142)

A single animal does not a breed make.

No diversity = higher risk (5, Insightful)

heroine (1220) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060834)

Without diversity, entire food supplies can be wiped out by single diseases.

Re:No diversity = higher risk (2, Informative)

Dragonshed (206590) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060888)

You mean like the Cavendish Banana [popsci.com] ?

Dolly not the first animal cloned (1)

RobinH (124750) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060856)

Dolly wasn't the first animal to be cloned, she was the first mammal to be cloned [wikipedia.org] .

This steak... (2, Funny)

kpainter (901021) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060876)

...tastes EXACTLY like the one I had last week!

We're So Mean (1)

Jhyrryl (208418) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060886)

I don't have a problem with raising animals so that we can feed on them, but now we don't even need them have sex before going to slaughter? That's just cruel and inhumane.

meanwhile, on the industry side... (5, Insightful)

SuperBanana (662181) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060896)

groups opposed to cloning in the food chain will now concentrate their efforts on convincing more suppliers to boycott the business of cloning

If GMO grain and hormone-loaded-milk are any example, the industry is concentrating on keeping the FDA from requiring industry mark which meat is from cloned animals. *And* aggressively going after businesses that market food as NOT being cloned/GMO/hormone-loaded.

It's absolutely hilarious to listen to the logic: "If we labeled it, people wouldn't buy it." Ho, really? No kidding, sherlock! That's how capitalism works. And guess what? 1/3rd of America doesn't want anything to do with you.

I'm so tired of farmers and businessmen that are the first to yack about "freedom" but keep begging for the government to save them / prop them up. As more and more people start demanding organic foods, the non-organic foods will drop in price because demand drops. I'll bet anything that the non-organic agribusinesses will go running to Congress begging for larger handouts...

"Not so fast," says the USDA (1)

sticks_us (150624) | more than 6 years ago | (#22060932)

Food and Drug Administration officials today announced that food from cloned animals is safe to eat even as their counterparts in the U.S. Department of Agriculture asked producers to keep their cloned animals off the market indefinitely [washingtonpost.com]

Apparently this is only for public perception--they do say (perhaps with a subtle irony), that "we conclude that meat and milk from cattle, swine and goat clones are as safe as food we eat every day..."

So what about (1)

iminplaya (723125) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061024)

cloned humans? Or maybe just a kidney? Or rump roast? And aren't apple trees a clone?

How about the steriod injected current meat? (2, Interesting)

GulagMoosh (806406) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061052)

Cloning is so prohibitively expensive that it won't be an issue for years to come. It's just another copy of the same animal that will get injected with various growth hormones to achieve the optimal fat to meat ratio. Baseball has nothing on the feed animal industry. I'd question the "organic" labeling the FDA has approved rather than be worrying about something that isn't likely to hit your table anytime soon.

Re:How about the steriod injected current meat? (2, Insightful)

Carbon016 (1129067) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061152)

They're not going to clone the animals they kill for meat. They'll clone a bunch of copies of a healthy cow/bull with good genetic stock then have it reproduce and use the offspring for meat. Way more cost-efficient.

I deem them delicious (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22061120)

rawr!

Whoa whoa whoa. Hold on a second. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22061122)

Now, I'm no biology major, but I did pay attention in high school. Seems to me that the whole concept behind sexual reproduction was to eliminate unfavorable traits and make way for better ones. Adaptation is the basis behind why life still exists after billions of years.

Now, if you take an animal and clone it over and over again, no improvement takes place. This means that every disease out there that affects said animal gets a "free pass" from one generation to the next, possibly never to be eliminated.

Furthermore, what are the standards going to be to deem which animals are "perfect" enough to clone? Are we going to be practicing some twisted new form of Bovine Eugenics here? Why do I picture cattle with Holstein swastikas?

Re:Whoa whoa whoa. Hold on a second. (4, Informative)

GulagMoosh (806406) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061198)

Animals bred for food don't procreate anyway. They get cut from the herd, moved into feed lots, fattened, sold and slaughtered. In the beef industry, it is about a 18-24 month process. The males get neutered when they are a few months old.

Very few animals bred for food get to actually remain as breeding stock. The females have a better chance since they can produce better feed animals for years. The breeding process is very tightly controlled. Consider what the sperm from a champion bull is worth. Likewise for a champion dairy bull.

No diversity is present in the industry. Everything is bred for a purpose. Nature has nothing to do with it.

dinner (1)

kurtis25 (909650) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061156)

Clone it's what's for dinner...

In other news ... (1)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061162)

a coalition of cannibal tribes deemed cloned FDA bureaucrats edible.

Krusty (1)

HaeMaker (221642) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061172)

I want to clear up a misconception about the Wha-Cha-Ma-Clone Sandwich. I used non-cloned meat from cloned animals!

Irony (1)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061174)

I see this got tagged 'this is not irony'... Actually, it's the very definition of irony.

http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/irony [reference.com]
5. an outcome of events contrary to what was, or might have been, expected

Sheep, despite being the first mammals (not animals, apparently) cloned, were not included on the 'safe' list. This is ironic since you would expect that the first animals would have had more time to be studied, and therefore more should be known about them... Yet they didn't get studied enough yet.

If you're going to nitpick the summary, at least be correct.

It must be said.. (1)

richardoz (529837) | more than 6 years ago | (#22061244)

I for one welcome our cloned bovine overlords...
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