While using Crispr in the medical field has attracted the most attention and discussion, agricultural applications have already passed the stage of lab tests and are the closest to mass production. The US Department of Agriculture has greenlit crops with genes altered by Crispr and other gene editing technologies for years. The first commercial Crispr-edited agricultural product, an extra-waxy corn from DowDupont for use as a starchy thickener, has been in the research pipeline since 2016 and is expected to hit the US market around 2020.

Gene-edited animals are on the way, too. They face higher regulatory barriers than plants, as the FDA treats the process of editing the genes of an animal similar to drugs for animals, but lower barriers than treatments for humans.

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