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Business Week reports that the public comment period has ended on the issue of whether food and milk made from the offspring of cloned animals should be allowed onto supermarket shelves.

“With the public comment period closed, it's clear that the cloning debate boils down to scientists vs. consumers,” Business Week writes. “Thousands of individuals wrote to the government to voice their opposition to the prospect of cloned products being allowed into the food supply. In large part, they made emotion appeals that cloning was immoral or that cloned food was repulsive.” At the same time, the scientific community largely has been vocal and supportive of cloned food, with some referring to opponents as ‘Luddites.”

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has said that it will consider only scientific arguments when issuing its final rules in this matter, which seems to suggest that approval for cloned food is practically inevitable. After all, FDA already has said that it was in favor of such a move, but wanted to hear first from the public.
KC's View:
We have to say that we’re somewhat surprised that FDA is being rigorously scientific in its consideration of the cloned food debate. After all, negative opinions about cloning emerged several times during the GOP presidential debate last week, and at least three candidates said they didn’t believe in evolution…which seemed to indicate a certain distrust in science. This makes us think that issues such as cloning could take on even greater political implications, and become an issue in the 2008 presidential race.

We’ve said all along that we have no problem with the sale and consumption of cloned food, but we differ with FDA in one key area – such products should be labeled as being made from cloned food, at least for the foreseeable future. People who argue against cloned food ought to at least have the option of not eating or drinking it…and ought to be able to easily find out where their food comes from. That’s called respecting the consumer.