KEEP AMERICA FIRST IN AGRICULTURE
Keep America First in Agriculture
NPPC is launching a new campaign, Keep America First in Agriculture, to broaden awareness and understanding of gene editing’s promise for livestock agriculture.
The U.S. has always been the global leader in agricultural innovation, but it’s running the risk of falling behind on an advancement that positively impacts animal and human health — gene editing.
What is Gene Editing
Gene editing is a technology that uses genetic material from an animal’s existing genome to strengthen its immune system. It helps farmers breed healthier, stronger livestock by providing a natural immunity to disease and reducing the need to use antibiotics or other drugs.
Gene editing accelerates the process of natural improvements in livestock, enabling America’s farmers to remain competitive in the global market.
FDA regulating means…
- Treat any gene edited animal as a living drug.
- Classify every farm as a drug-manufacturing facility.
- Delay the approval process for each gene up to 10 years.
While countries like China, Brazil, and Argentina are moving quickly with this technology to gain competitive advantage in the market, the future of gene editing is uncertain in the United States due to a regulatory battle between the USDA and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Gene Editing under the FDA…
The FDA’s regulation will inaccurately classify livestock as drugs, and farms as drug-manufacturing facilities. This would have significant consequences for international trade in animals and animal products, making the approval process impractical, lengthy, and expensive for the American livestock industry.
While with the USDA…
The USDA already operates a review process for gene-editing in plants, which can easily be adapted for livestock, and moreover has decades of experience working closely with the livestock and agriculture industries. In addition, all gene-edited animals would be safeguarded under the existing Animal Health Protection Act.
The U.S. has always been the global leader in agricultural innovation
America’s livestock industry in numbers:
- 550,000 U.S. jobs.
- $1.02 trillion annually.
- Almost 6% of our GDP.
By pioneering new techniques such as gene editing, the U.S. has maintained a global competitive advantage.
Allowing the FDA to regulate Gene Editing and classify livestock as if they were drugs is likely to drive high-end animal breeding out of the U.S., with catastrophic consequences to our economy.