WASHINGTON, Dec 28: The US government announced on Thursday that food from cloned animals is safe for human consumption and needs no special labelling. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) was to make the announcement following studies that found that meat and milk from clones and their progeny is as safe to eat as that from conventionally bred animals.

Advocacy groups, however, criticised the decision and pointed to independent polls that show over 60 per cent of Americans oppose animal cloning and would not purchase cloned meat and milk even if the government says they are safe.

“We think this would be a very bad decision,” Carol Foreman, director of food policy at the Consumer Federation of America, told AFP. “We are urging people to write to the FDA, to members of Congress, to urge them to tell the FDA to back off.”

She said failing any action on the part of the government, advocacy groups would urge consumers to pressure retailers not to sell products from cloned animals.

Mr Foreman said the government was ignoring scientific data showing that clone pregnancies often end in miscarriage and many of the animals are deformed or do not survive to maturity.—AFP

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