Italy wants to ban laboratory meat
Farmers demonstrated against “artificial food” – a reference to the country’s “leading role” in food. The government in Rome heard them.
Health Minister Orazio Schellaci said the bill passed in Italy follows a “principle of caution”. (Icon picture)
Italy wants to ban the manufacture and sale of man-made foods, especially lab-grown meat. The government in Rome passed a similar bill on Tuesday night.
Health Minister Orazio Schillaci said this followed a “principle of caution”. In his words, there is no “scientific evidence” that consuming “artificially processed foods has no harmful effects”.
Violation of the ban, which specifically targets the production of meat in the laboratory based on animal stem cells, will result in fines of up to 60,000 euros. Parliament has yet to approve the law.
“No to artificial food”
The Italian Agricultural Association Coldiretti demonstrated in front of the Government House in Rome and demanded “No to artificial food”. As a European leader in food quality and safety, Italy has a duty to protect businesses and citizens. So far there has been no application in the European Union to allow the production or marketing of such foods.
Meanwhile, in the Netherlands, scientists served up a hunk of meat from an extinct woolly mammoth. The Australian-based company Vow presented the lab-grown meat at the Science Museum in Amsterdam. The researchers first sequenced DNA from mammoths, supplemented it with genes from the African elephant, and then transplanted the whole thing into sheep cells. The company explained that the meat is not currently intended for eating – the protein of the mammoth, which is more than 4,000 years old, must first be tested for suitability for food.
AFP / sys
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