Persistent false claims circulate about mRNA vaccines in food

Several popular anti-vaccine social media accounts and blogs are circulating the false claim that mRNA vaccines are or soon will be in the food supply through vaccinated or genetically engineered livestock. One article claims that mRNA vaccines will be added to food this month. These claims are based on three studies: a 2013 Indian review—incorrectly identified as an “NIH study”—that discusses the possibility of edible vaccines, a 2021 American study exploring the use of plants to produce mRNA vaccines, and a recent Chinese study that used vessels made from milk protein to deliver an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine to mice. The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association released a statement in response to the false claims clarifying that no mRNA vaccines are in cattle.

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The Public Health Communications Collaborative (PHCC) was formed in 2020 to coordinate and amplify public health messaging on COVID-19 and increase Americans’ confidence in guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and state and local public health officials.

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