Food minister Jim Paice has thrown his weight behind suppliers’ demands to allow products from cloned animals into shops.

Paice said yesterday that meat and milk from the offspring of cloned animals should not be prevented from reaching supermarket shelves.

He said “the government shares the [European Commission’s] view that there should be no restrictions on the use of offspring of cloned animals”.

His comments represent the firmest support yet in Whitehall for the use of cloned animals.

Late last year the Food Standards Agency waded into the controversy over the use of cloned animals in the food chain.

The agency requires any product derived from cloned animals to submit to a ‘novel foods’ license but said in November that meant from cloned creatures was “hypothetically” safe.

The comments from Paice prompted criticism from animals welfare groups, while the Soil Association said it was “unacceptable the government has come to this conclusion without adequate evidence”.

Read more
Industry relieved as FSA eases up on clone labels (11 December 2010)
‘Hypothetical safety’ of GM meat blasted (4 December 2010)