The establishment of a commercial animal cloning center is being planned by Chinese scientists.
The facility, located in the northern port of Tianjin and expected to open by the end of this year, will mass clone and produce as many as one million cows per year by 2020.
In addition to cattle, the factory will also direct their efforts in cloning genetically engineering police dogs, pets and racehorses.
The deal was signed on Friday between Boyalife Genomics, concentrating on stem cell and regenerative medicine, and TEDA, according to Boyalife’s press release. The facility will be constructed by Sinica, Peking University’s Institute of Molecular Medicine, the Tianjin International Joint Academy of Biomedicine, and the Republic of Korea’s Sooam Biotech Research Foundation.
Two hundred million yuan has been invested in the project.
“Everything in the supermarket looks good – it’s almost all shiny, good-looking, and uniformly shaped. For animals, we weren’t able to do that in the past,” Xu Xiaochun, CEO of Boyalife said. “But with our cloning factory, we choose to do so now. The technology is already there. If this is allowed. I don’t think there are other companies better than Boyalife that make better technology.”
Since the cloning of Dolly, the first cloned sheep, in 1996, other animals like mice and cattle have been cloned. China has also been contributing to the science of cloning since 2000.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) highlighted the safety of cloned meat, saying that “meat and milk from cow, pig, and goat clones and the offspring of any animal clones are as safe as food we eat every day.”
According to Express, Xiaochun highlighted that farmers in China are facing difficulties in meeting the market demands of beef cattle. With a massive laboratory, an animal center and a gene bank, the facility was created to clone enough beef cattle to meet the demands, which is expected to escalate to as much as 2.2 million tones over the next decade. Over the last five years, the demand has already soared by 25 percent.