Gene Editing for Animal Welfare - Part Two

Gene Editing for Animal Welfare - Part Two

Tim Hammerich
Tim Hammerich
News Reporter
With California Ag Today, I’m Tim Hammerich.

The public is invited to a webinar this Saturday about gene editing for animal welfare. One of the speakers will be UC Cooperative Extension specialist Dr. Alison Van Eenennaam, who will be sharing how this technology can be used to improve the lives of dairy cattle.

Van Eenennaam… “We're actually partnering with Washington State University. It's going to be virtual now. So it'll be a webinar. And we're going to talk about what genome editing is, and how it might be used to introduce not growing horns or polled into the dairy cattle population.”

Recent studies have shown a growing acceptance of gene editing technology among consumers. To illustrate this point, Van Eenennaam, an animal scientist, uses an unexpected example.

Van Eenennaam… “The Impossible burger, which of course is a plant-based meat alternative that uses genetically engineered soy hemoglobin to make it bleed.”

Van Eenenaam says that once people understand the benefits to animals, health, and the environment, they understand the potential of gene editing technology.

Van Eenennaam… “I believe that if there's a just reason for doing it, and it makes sense to people. Especially in this case, it's kind of an animal welfare trait that the main beneficiary is the cow. And so it does put a little bit of a different ethical dimension on it compared to maybe Roundup Ready corn or something like that.”

Register today for the webinar and you might even have the chance to earn a Starbucks gift card. Find this report on for the link.


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