WASHINGTON – Canada’s eighth case of BSE was confirmed Aug. 23.
No part of the mature beef cow’s carcass entered the human food or animal feed systems, according to the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.
Preliminary information provided by the owner and an examination conducted by a private veterinarian estimate the animal’s age was 8-10 years.
Based on this range, exposure to the BSE agent likely occurred either before the feed ban’s introduction or during its early implementation, the agency said.
An investigation is under way to locate the positive animal’s birth farm and herdmates.
Business effect? U.S. Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns said he didn’t anticipate the discovery would affect the status of beef imports from Canada.
“While our risk assessment anticipated multiple cases of BSE, we are confident that the interlocking safeguards in place in both Canada and the U.S. are providing effective consumer protection,” he said.
Rules. USDA continues work on its proposed rule to allow animals over 30 months of age to be imported from countries at minimal risk for BSE.
Johanns said USDA will use the latest discovery in its risk assessment to ensure maximum effectiveness and consumer protection.
Surveillance. The Canadian BSE surveillance program continues to demonstrate its ability to effectively detect periodic BSE cases as Canada progresses toward the eradication of the disease.
All cases confirmed in Canada have been identified through the program, which, since 2003, has tested more than 117,500 cattle from the highest risk populations.
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