Champion steer positive for steroids

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SALEM, Ohio – The Ohio Department of Agriculture wants to disqualify Geauga County’s 2007 grand champion market steer and have its exhibitor give back his ribbons and $7,000 premium check after the steer tested positive for steroids.
ODA sent a certified letter Nov. 27 to Clark Adams and his mother, Dona Adams, both of Huntsburg, to notify them of the proposed disqualification.
Dona Adams is named in the disqualification because she signed the Drug Use Notification Form for her son, a minor.
Rules. State livestock exhibition rules, in place since 1995, say all junior fair livestock exhibitors must fill out a form to indicate any and all medications that have been given to their project animal, and minors must have the form signed by a parent.
Clark Adams didn’t list any drugs on his form, but a urine sample taken from the steer Aug. 31, 2007, tested positive for a steroid called dexamethasone.
The department of agriculture’s investigation showed the prescription drug was administered without the direction of a veterinarian, and it “rendered the animal unacceptable for slaughter and made the animal appear to be more sound than was actually the case.”
Background. Farm and Dairy’s coverage of the Geauga County Fair showed Adams, 16, sold his 1,335-pound steer for $5.80 per pound, or $7,743.
Summertime coverage also shows the Adams family is no stranger to the purple circle, with Clark’s brother, John, showing the 2006 champion and his sister, Andrea, showing the 2005 champion.
Andrea Adams said the “accusations have done a lot to our family,” but refused to comment further.
The Adams family has until Dec. 27 to request a formal hearing on the matter. A formal hearing would allow Clark Adams and his mother to argue their side of the story.
(Reporter Andrea Zippay welcomes feedback by phone at 800-837-3419 or by e-mail at azippay@farmanddairy.com.)

Related coverage:
Geauga Co. steer under investigation (11/8/2007)
http://www.farmanddairy.com/1editorialbody.lasso?-token.folder=2007-11-08&-token.story=67564.112114&-token.subpub=

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