China has announced plans to build a giant animal cloning facility. BoyaLife, the company behind the project, has confirmed that operations will begin in 2016 in the Chinese city of Tianjin.
Over £20m will be invested in the new site which aims to produce thousands of cow embryos a year to meet China’s growing demand for beef. The 14,000-square-metre facility will also create clones of racehorses, sniffer dogs and family pets.
BoyaLife’s chief executive Xu Xiaochun told the Guardian: “This is going to change our world and our lives,” he said. “It is going to make our life better. So we are very, very excited about it.”
The UK will not be investing in similar projects in the near future. In September, the cloning of animals for farming in Europe was banned as a result of welfare considerations.
Given our cautious approach, it seems unlikely large numbers of UK owners would choose replicate their much-loved pet but BoyaLife seems to feel that, in China at least, there’s a market for clones.