GM Cows now producing human milk?!

It is predicted by an expert in biotechnology, that human milk produced by genetically modified cows will be available to the public in just two years.

The scary thing is, this bizarre and disturbing prediction is hardly even out of the question. A major exhibition was held in Beijing, China from the 7th to the 14th of March. The exhibition showcased all of China‘s major technological achievements in the 11th five year plan (2006-2010). Part of that exhibition were photos depicting a herd of genetically modified human milk producing cows.

Details of the bioengineering techniques used in the composition of this milk is not available. There is also no information available to just how much the genetically modified cow produced milk will resemble actual human milk.

Human milk, compared to cow milk, actually has a lower protein density and most of the health benefits found are all “non-nutritional.” Human milk contains two types of nutrition known for boosting the immune system as well as the central nervous system of children. Cow milk does not.

Li Ning, a scientist from the Chinese Academy of Engineering and director of the State Key Laboratories for AgroBiotechnology at China Agricultural University was quoted by China Daily saying that,

“In ancient China, only the emperor and the empress could drink human milk throughout their lives, which was believed to be the height of opulence,why not make that kind of milk more available for ordinary people?”

China’s milk industry is riddled with mishaps and national scandals. From 2008 to 2010 China had a scandal involving traces of melamine found in a variety of China’s milk products. 300, 000 children fell ill from consuming this milk and six babies had died according to BBC UK. This led to the declining breast feeding rate in the country which was then blamed for migrant working patterns as well as the rising body image concerns. More and more Chinese women are choosing not to breast feed their children due to concerns of developing “saggy breasts.”

Interestingly enough, 90% of China’s adult population is lactose intolerant, meaning they are unable to consume any milk products. So technically the experiment of genetically modifying cows to produce human milk was highly unnecessary and not to mention a complete waste of money. What China needs is a breast feeding awareness campaign to put a stop to this unnecessary concern over body image. Preventing anymore melamine laced milk scandals.

Thankfully before this bizarre product is able to hit the shelves of China, it must first surpass government testing before being deemed “safe.”

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