Red Angus Association Works to Utilize More Gene-Editing Applications to Promote Herd Health

Listen to Ron Hays talk with Tom Brink about gene editing.

In this episode of Beef Buzz, Senior Farm and Ranch Broadcaster, Ron Hays is back talking with the CEO of the Red Angus Association, Tom Brink about gene editing.

According to Brink, the Red Angus Association has already moved forward with some applications for gene-edited animals within the breed registry. Like other breeds of cattle, Brink explained there is still work to be done regarding registration logistics.

“A lot of us are trying to figure out exactly what is the right way to handle this new technology, and to potentially bring some of those animals into our database,” Brink said. “We have decided at Red Angus that we are going to look at this new technology one gene edit at a time, and each one will be evaluated on an individual merit.”

Currently, Brink said the naturally occurring slick gene and black-to-red gene edits have been approved by the Red Angus Association. Brink said the black-to-red gene edit is especially useful in hotter climates as there is an 11-degree difference in black-hided cattle compared to red-hided cattle.

“We have some of those in our registry already, so it is open for those two edits, and we will look at any additional edits one at a time,” Brink said. “We will catalog those and identify them individually so they will be identified with a unique identifier in the database.”

As this technology progresses, Brink said the regulatory side will be the factor that takes the most time. The potential to improve animal health is a big incentive to utilize this technology, Brink explained.

The Beef Buzz is a regular feature heard on radio stations around the region on the Radio Oklahoma Ag Network and is a regular audio feature found on this website as well. Click on the LISTEN BAR at the top of the story for today’s show and check out our archives for older Beef Buzz shows covering the gamut of the beef cattle industry today.

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