I appreciate the strength of feeling around this issue. Ministers take the welfare of all animals extremely seriously and are committed to strengthening and supporting long-term conservation of animals both internationally and at home.
Thank you for writing to me about precision breeding and gene editing. This advance in technology will help the UK achieve greater food security and more sustainable farming, and I support the Bill which is going through Parliament at the moment.
I would like to assure you that my ministerial colleagues and I take the welfare of all animals very seriously. Ministers are delivering a series of ambitious reforms, as outlined in the Action Plan for Animal Welfare.
I believe that this should be a devolved issue for the Northern Ireland Assembly to legislate on. Like you, I am concerned, as I do not see why the law there should be more liberal than in the rest of the UK.
I have written to the Chief Executives of the local hospital trusts we have in Meon Valley asking if they would consider participating in the GBS3 trial and if not why. I will get back to you as soon as I have a response.
Peatlands are an iconic feature of our landscapes and are the UK’s largest stores of carbon. They also provide vital ecosystem services, supplying over a quarter of the UK’s drinking water, decreasing flood risk, and providing food and shelter for rare wildlife.