New working group on genome editing and farmed animals

The Council has begun a new in-depth inquiry on the ethical issues raised by the use of genome editing techniques in farmed animals. This is the third inquiry of our genome editing programme, which began in 2016 with genome editing: an ethical review, and was followed by genome editing and human reproduction, published in July 2018.

The genome editing and farmed animals working group includes individuals with expertise in law, philosophy, genetics, biotechnology, political theory, animal welfare, animal health, food and society, sociology, and economics.

We’re delighted to announce that the members of the working group are:

John Dupré (Chair)

Professor of the philosophy of science, University of Exeter and Director, Egenis.

Rebecca Baines

Partner, Fieldfisher.

Elizabeth Cripps

Senior Lecturer in Political Theory and Associate Director of the Just World Institute, University of Edinburgh.

Helen Ferrier

Chief Science and Regulatory Affairs Adviser, National Farmers Union.

Rob Fraser

Emeritus Professor of Agricultural Economics, University of Kent.

Lyn Frewer

Professor of Food & Society, School of Natural and Environmental Sciences, Newcastle University.

Andy Greenfield

Programme Leader in Developmental Genetics, MRC Harwell Institute and Council member.

Jasmeet Kaler

Associate Professor in Epidemiology and Farm Animal Health, Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences, University of Nottingham.

David Lawrence

Non-Executive Director, Spectrum Limited, former Director, Syngenta AG, Director, UK Knowledge Transfer Network Ltd., member, UK Industrial Biotechnology Leadership Forum and UK Agri-Tech Strategy Leadership Council and Council member.

Peter Stevenson

Director, Compassion in World Farming.

Bruce Whitelaw

Professor of Animal Biotechnology, The Roslin Institute and the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies, University of Edinburgh.

Anne Murcott

Professorial Research Associate, SOAS Food Studies Centre, University of London.


The group held their first meeting on Tuesday 8th January, and will be seeking a wide range of further views and evidence in the early phase of this project.

More information about this project will be available soon, and you can keep up to date with this work as it progresses in the following ways:

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Nuffield Council on Bioethics
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London, WC1B 3JS

Tel: +44 (0)20 7681 9619

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