Billionaire Bill Gates is investing £29million to breed a “supercow” based on British cattle. Daily Mirror reports that,he wants to take genes from British dairy herds and infuse them with DNA from tough African breeds to create a high- yielding animal that can thrive anywhere.
UK Holstein-Friesians produce 40 pints of milk a day on average – their African cousins manages just 3.5.
For more than a billion people living in the poorest countries, agriculture and livestock are a lifeline out of poverty.
“The science and research being led by the great minds here in Edinburgh are making huge strides in improving the health and productivity of livestock.”
One of the key goals of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation – the charity set up to distribute the majority of the billionaire’s wealth from his software giant Microsoft – is to help alleviate poverty in the developing world.
Edinburgh scientists will also use software to develop vaccines to save the lives of cattle hit by disease in tropical regions in research partly funded by the Department for International Development.