Genetic Engineering in Livestock
New Applications and Interdisciplinary Perspectives
Margret Engelhard and Others
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Recently, the first 'zoopharming' product has reached market approval: it is a recombinant human protein for medical use that is produced in the milk of transgenic goats. In addition, other transgenic animals, including faster-growing salmon and „environmentally friendly' pigs with reduced levels of phosphate in their faeces are awaiting regulatory approval. These are only some examples of upcoming applications of genetic engineering in farm animals. Other potential applications include traditional breeding goals such as higher milk or meat yields, leaner meat, and disease resistance. While genetic engineering in livestock opens a huge range of possibilities, it also brings about concerns of safety and justification: does genetic engineering affect animal welfare? Is it safe and morally acceptable to apply genetic engineering to farm animals for the various purposes that are envisaged?