NPPC accuses FDA of ‘delay tactics’
on gene-edited livestock
Source of article below: www.meatingplace.com
By Kate Gibson on 1/14/2021
The National Pork Producers Council is continuing its campaign in support of a proposal to transfer regulatory oversight of gene-edited livestock to USDA.
The trade group on Thursday lashed out at Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Stephen Hahn for reportedly saying he’d “refuse to sign the memorandum of understanding between the FDA and USDA addressing gene-edited livestock.”
Hahn reportedly told the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services he won’t sign onto the proposed switch of regulatory power over genetically engineered agricultural animals, currently under the purview of the FDA.
Discussions on the matter between HHS, FDA, USDA and the White House are ongoing.
First reported late Tuesday by Politico, Hahn is said to be questioning the legality and possible health ramifications of potentially relaxed oversight of some genetically altered products.
“We are disappointed that the FDA continues to engage in delay tactics that are holding back U.S. agriculture,” sated NPPC President Howard “A.V.” Roth. “FDA regulation will result in an impractical, lengthy and expensive approval process,” added Roth, a Wisconsin hog farmer.
U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue in December solicited public comment on the potential transfer that would instead have USDA overseeing genetically engineered agricultural animals.
The NPPC praised Perdue’s move at the time, noting it had been an advocate for the USDA regulatory oversight even as the FDA claimed jurisdiction.
The trade group contends the cost and time it takes for FDA approval of the emerging technology is prohibitive, and that China, Brazil and Canada are pulling ahead of the U.S.