Animal Breeding / Biotechnology / Genetics

Genetics, genomics and gene modification: What does the future of animal production hold?

Professor David Hume of The Roslin Institute recently reflected on the challenge to meet global demand for animal products whilst at the same time reducing the overall environmental impact.

Writing on the Global Food Security blog, he explains how productivity in the livestock sector has massively increased, ‘through a combination of genetic improvement and better husbandry, nutrition and disease control.’

‘What will constrain future advances in livestock production is investment. Large animal research is expensive. Over the past 20 years, there has been systematic underinvestment in the sector by governments all over the world, and expertise and infrastructure has declined.’

Sustainable gains in productivity of livestock ‘will only be achieved if governments recognise that the required research is “public good”, and re-enter and re-engage with the livestock research sector with substantial investment.’

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