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Beef Ban May Backfire

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SASH

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Canadian cattle industry warns beef ban may backfire on U.S.




DENVER, May 17, 2005 (The Canadian Press via COMTEX) -- The longer the U.S. border remains closed to Canadian cattle, the less important the American market will become north of the border as producers there slaughter and process more of their own animals, an official with a Canadian industry group said.

John Masswohl, head of international relations for the Canadian Cattlemen's Association, met Tuesday with Colorado business and political leaders to make the case that his country's cattle industry is safe despite three cases there of mad cow disease. But even if the ban remains, Masswohl said he expects the Canadian cattle business to strengthen and the fallout to grow for U.S. meat packers that used to depend on Canadian cattle.

Keeping out Canadian beef will also drive up prices for U.S. consumers and eventually boomerang on ranchers, he added.

"I think if you get five years down the road, Canadian cattle producers, the ones that can survive and get through this, are going to say 'This was probably one of the best things that happened to us,' " Masswohl said.

Masswohl's trips to Colorado and other states show otherwise, said the head of a ranchers' group that successfully sued in February to block a move by the U.S. Department of Agriculture to lift the ban.

"I think it's in the interest of the Canadian beef industry to regain access to U.S. markets as quickly as possible," said Bill Bullard, chief executive of the Billings, Montana-based R-CALF United Stockgrowers of America.

In 2002, Canada shipped 1.6 million cattle to the United States, its largest foreign market.

Mad cow disease, or bovine spongiform encephalopathy, attacks the animal's nervous system. People can contract variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, which is rare but usually fatal, by eating BSE-contaminated meat.

The USDA shut the border to live Canadian cattle in May 2003 after the country reported a case of BSE. Two more cases were discovered earlier this year in Alberta, Canada. The lone U.S. occurrence, confirmed in Washington state in December 2003, was in a cow born in Alberta.

Several countries banned U.S. beef imports as they previously did Canadian imports. While some have relaxed restrictions, Japan, the largest foreign market for U.S. beef in 2003, has not.

The USDA has allowed imports from Canada of boneless beef from younger cattle and was set to lift the ban on live cattle under 30 months old in March when U.S. District Judge Richard Cebull in Billings, Mo., issued a temporary order halting the plan. The USDA has appealed the injunction to the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns on Tuesday announced an industry summit he hopes will speed the reopening of the Canadian border. On a tour of a beef processing plant south of Logan, Utah, Johanns said the round-table discussion next month at the University of Minnesota's St. Paul campus will look at the safety of North American beef and economic effects on the industry.

The border closure has cost Canadian ranchers $5.7 billion US, according to industry estimates.

In the United States, a study released in April by the Kansas Agriculture Department says the industry lost between $3.2 billion and $4.7 billion last year because of the mad cow case in Washington state. The effect on the meat-packing business has been significant, said Mark Dopp, senior vice-president and general counsel to the American Meat Institute, a trade group.

"Our best estimate overall is that 6,000 jobs have been lost, certainly in part due to the Canadian border closing," Dopp said.

A federal judge in Washington in March rejected the group's effort to lift all barriers to Canadian beef shipments.

The National Cattlemen's Beef Association, which represents ranchers and corporations, has criticized R-CALF's lawsuit as political.

Masswohl of the Canadian Cattlemen's Association said he believes the motive is to keep U.S. cattle prices high by declaring that Canadian cattle pose a risk.

"The reality is that the risk of BSE in Canada and the U.S. is pretty much the same because we have the same polices and practices and we have pretty much equivalent levels of enforcement," he said.

A closed border will do nothing but cost the United States business and possibly drive up costs for consumers and depress U.S. cattle prices if the Canadian cattle industry expands, Masswohl added.

Bullard of R-CALF, however, said Canada was slower to stop imports from Europe, hit hard by mad cow disease in the 1990s. He questioned the thoroughness of Canada's enforcement of a ban on cattle feed containing cattle parts, the suspected cause of the outbreak in Europe.

"We sympathize with Canadian producers," Bullard said. "But our industry cannot afford to relax our protections. We must prevent that kind of devastation from occurring."
 

don

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then we'll be blamed for that, too. r-calf can deny they ever wanted the border closed and ot will believe them.
 

Kathy

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The person who made this statement from above, should be sued.

People can contract variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, which is rare but usually fatal, by eating BSE-contaminated meat

There is no proof the one causes the other. Some scientists think there is a connection because of the location of plaques and the timing of the disease. However, there are many scientists who do not believe that meat causes vCJD.

Why is it everyone wants to make RCALF accountable for their false statements, but not the media.

Our beef associations should be jumping on these people who make qualified statements such as this, without the backup. The longer we allow this to happen, the harder and harder it will be to get a retraction.

I found a quote from the late, Beth Williams CWD expert:

“Beth Williams, a professor of veterinary sciences at the University of Wyoming who first discovered CWD in 1977, examined the susceptibility of cattle exposed to CWD by intracerebral inoculation, oral inoculation and by contact with CWD-infected cervids in endemic facilities. Three of 13 cattle inoculated intracerebrally developed evidence of CWD, Williams reports. But cattle exposed via more natural routes of exposure have shown no evidence of CWD.”


Please note that Dr Beth Williams, is calling the intracerebral and oral inoculation procedures "un-natural". The "more natural routes of exposure have shown no evidence of CWD".

This is exactly the same situation with BSE. In all experimental transmission studies they have to first homogenize, sonicate and inoculate. Natural routes of exposure have shown no evidence of transmission.
 

Tam

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He questioned the thoroughness of Canada's enforcement of a ban on cattle feed containing cattle parts

Bullard can question it all he wants but look at the records and see just who's enforcement should be questions. Oh thats right Bulland also questions the US enforcement as that is why the US can't import as that would put the whole US herd at risk.

"We sympathize with Canadian producers," Bullard said. "But our industry cannot afford to relax our protections. We must prevent that kind of devastation from occurring."
Talk about a CYA statement Leo says it will be a non issue and Bullard thinks it will be devastating. Do the consumer only listen to Leo while the courts and R-CALF membership listen to Bulland :lol: Which way will it be you R-CALF supporters devastation or non issue.
You can't afford to relax your protections because you have lower ones now if you compare to other countries protections. So why don't you quit blaming everyone else and do something about the protections you can do something about. The Canadian beef industry implemented their own National ID system, and it is up to the US beef producer what he feeds his cattle isn't it so isn't it also up to them to only buy from feed mills that are compliant. If the feed mills that aren't compliant have no customers they will either clean up their act or go out of business. And the USDA is to test 4D's to prove prevelance turn over your dead and dieing. That would be one sure way of stopping the questions araising from the testing being done in the US. The Canadian cattle industry took it upon themselves to do a few of these things but it looks as if the US industry are waiting for the USDA to negoitate them out of the problems they face and that is being stalled because of the way R-CALF thinks everything should be solved in a court of law.
 

Mike

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Kathy, Here is an excerpt from a English study:

A group of four-month-old calves were infected orally with a single dose of 100g of BSE-infected bovine brain homogenate (see the reference list for the full experimental design). Small numbers of these calves, and uninfected controls, were sacrificed at intervals (approximately four months). Their tissues were then inoculated into mice to look for evidence of infectivity. A list of the tissues examined by this means is appended.

The first positive tissue was found in the gastro-intestinal tract, in the distal ileum, an area where there is a high density of lymphoid tissue (called Peyers’ patches), which eventually regress in mature animals. From six to 18 months after infection levels of infectivity in the distal ileum increased, indicating replication of the BSE agent in the gut. Although the infectivity levels in the distal ileum fell thereafter, possibly associated with the regression of lymphoid tissue, it does suggest that once infected the distal ileum remains infectious throughout life. Infectivity was not detected in other parts of the gastro-intestinal tract.


The central nervous system was shown to be infectious ( and positive by other tests) at 32 months post infection. This is only three months before the first clinical signs were seen in animals that remained alive. The incubations period was shorter than seen in the majority of animals that succumb to natural BSE, primarily because the experimental dose of 100g was relatively large in order to ensure infection. Nevertheless, it had been assumed that infectivity would be present in the CNS at around mid-point in the incubation (as seen in mice and sheep). All risk assessments have retained that assumption because it provides a margin of safety. Tests using more sensitive immunoassays and inoculation into cattle do however suggest that the brain is not infected significantly earlier in the incubation period than originally estimated.

In summary, infectivity has been found in brain, spinal cord and retina of naturally infected cattle, and in brain, spinal cord, associated ganglia (trigeminal and dorsal root), distal ileum and bone marrow, of experimentally infected cattle. The list of tissues examined in naturally and experimentally infected animals was similar, but not identical, so the detection of infectivity in one group has to be taken as indicating the presence of infectivity in the same tissue in the other group.
 

Kathy

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Mike,

This is the Well's study, I believe, you are referring to.

Once again, ORALLY CHALLENGED with what and how?

HOMOGENATED BRAIN TISSUE, subjected to laboratory procedures including sonication, and then DRENCHED directly into the stomachs of the calves. NOT FED, and not fed brain material processed in a manner considered equivalent to the rendering processes, etc. UN-NATURAL!

The Wells report also lumps animals together. In one case, when 3 animals were destroyed, only one tested positive. The lab workers POOLED the samples and retested, the test came back positive. The new data relayed that all three animals were positive. NOT!

The practice of inoculation of homogenized tissues subjected to sonication (ultrasound) is bogus!! BOGUS!

I appreciate your providing evidence to me and if it is not the Wells report you are referring to, let me know and give me the actual study to look at, thanks. I have had the Wells report for two years. It is held up as the proof of infection via feeding.

I'm sorry, but their definition of oral transmission is skewed! It is not natural, or common feeding practices being followed.

Why is they can spend billions on BSE and nobody can tell us what the molecular make-up of a prion is? Actually, Dr. David Brown has created them, in vitro. He shorted sample nerve cells of copper and overloaded manganese, creating the exact tertiary structure of a prion.

See "Metal Imbalance and compromised anti-oxidant function are early changes in prion disease", Dr. David Brown, Alana Thackray, et. al. Cambridge University, UK. Check it out!
 

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