Animals cow

Published on March 25th, 2011 | by Chris Milton

7

Human Milk To Come From GM Cows

March 25th, 2011 by

A biotechnology scientist has predicted that genetically modified cows will soon begin the commercial production of a form of human milk.

The claim came as a herd of 200 cows that have already had their genes tweaked was showcased in Beijing as part of a celebration of the achievements of the last Chinese five year plan, which ran from 2006-2010.

The rationale behind the genetic modification is to improve cow’s milk by making it nutritionally the same as human milk — at present it is deficient in two important proteins.

However, the resultant milk is not exactly the same.  The researchers say it has a much stronger taste and, of course, it does not contain the flow of antibodies from mother to baby which breast milk’s best proponents say is a vital part of breastfeeding babies.

The Chinese government has given the researchers 22 months in which to conduct laboratory tests on the milk, at the end of which it will determine whether it is safe for the milk and dairy products derived from it to be sold in Chinese supermarkets.

The announcement has caused puzzlement around the world.

“Why? Where’s the need?” wondered Devinder Sharma, an award winning Indian journalist covering international food policy.

Paul Kingsnorth, a prominent UK writer and green campaigner, was more forthright with his opinions. “At what point do humans just fucking stop this crap?” he asked.

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Picture credit: cow by flikr under Creative Commons Attribution License.

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About the Author

is a seasoned sustainability journalist focusing on business, finance and clean technology. His writing's been carried by a number of highly respected publishers, including The Guardian, The Washington Post and Scientific American. You can follow him on twitter as @britesprite, where he's one of Mashable's top green tweeters and Fast Company's CSR thought leaders. Alternatively you can follow him to the shops... but that would be boring.



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  • http://Web Prathamesh Kavale

    May we forget? Human Zygote only develop in Cows’ Uterus….

  • ernest albert

    obviously since the bazar, the capitalist ogre has seduced n reduced woman/ mother to a mannequin it has ‘foreseen and opened’ in anticipation yet another “mother’s milk shop”,lactogens nestle’s baby milks will soon be passe. urban women will not need to que. will be home-delivered like pizzas. So with this we enter an era where mother-child’s very bonding in the initial 12 to 24 weeks will be rendered super-fluous and we will have new generations of huminids….am very sorry to have read, known this.

    • http://importantmedia.org/members/zshahan/ Zachary Shahan

      well-written

  • http://importantmedia.org/members/zshahan/ Zachary Shahan

    i am totally with the comments on the bottom of the post. WTF?

  • http://Web Andrea

    Why can’t we just leave things they way they have been for millenia … our grandparents and great grandparents lived longer than most ppl do or will these days. Man is way too stupid to improve on nature, just give it up… arseholes!

    • http://importantmedia.org/members/zshahan/ Zachary Shahan

      yeah, the idea that we will improve nature is on of the great, incorrect arrogances of our species.

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