What is biotechnology?


Biotechnology involves using technology to exploit animals, plants or other living organisms in a way deemed to be of use to people. It includes the use of techniques to genetically alter and clone animals.

What we think

Biotechnology is being applied around the world more widely than ever before in scientific research, healthcare, agriculture, and environmental protection - and it can involve millions of animals. We are specifically concerned about genetic alteration and cloning.

  • The techniques used to create genetically altered (GA) and cloned animals have huge potential to cause pain, suffering, distress and lasting harm to animals.
    • The techniques used are very inefficient - for every animal successfully created, many others will have lost their lives. 
    • Even the newest techniques used to create GA animals, which are said to be more 'precise', cause suffering, are inefficient and waste animal lives.
    • Using animals in this way increases the perception of animals as 'research tools', 'commodities' or 'units of production' for human benefit, rather than the complex, sentient individuals that we know them to be. 
  • Developments in genome editing and cloning are progressing rapidly with very little informed debate as to whether this is something the public would want or need. 
  • The number of GA animals used in research and testing is increasing.

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