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Confirmed Case

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Apr 8, 2005
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Western America

WASHINGTON, June 24, 2005 -- Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns today announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture has received final test results from The Veterinary Laboratories Agency in Weybridge, England, confirming that a sample from an animal that was blocked from the food supply in November 2004 has tested positive for bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE). Johanns also directed USDA scientists to work with international experts to thoughtfully develop a new protocol that includes performing dual confirmatory tests in the event of another "inconclusive" BSE screening test.

"We are currently testing nearly 1,000 animals per day as part of our BSE enhanced surveillance program, more than 388,000 total tests, and this is the first confirmed case resulting from our surveillance," Johanns said. "I am encouraged that our interlocking safeguards are working exactly as intended. This animal was blocked from entering the food supply because of the firewalls we have in place. Americans have every reason to continue to be confident in the safety of our beef."

Effective immediately, if another BSE rapid screening test results in inconclusive findings, USDA will run both an IHC and Western blot confirmatory test. If results from either confirmatory test are positive, the sample will be considered positive for BSE.

"I want to make sure we continue to give consumers every reason to be confident in the health of our cattle herd," Johanns said. "By adding the second confirmatory test, we boost that confidence and bring our testing in line with the evolving worldwide trend to use both IHC and Western blot together as confirmatory tests for BSE."

USDA has initiated an epidemiological investigation to determine the animal's herd of origin. That investigation is not yet complete. The animal was born before the United States instituted a ruminant-to-ruminant feed ban in August 1997, which prevents the use of most mammalian protein in cattle feed. According to internationally accepted research, feed containing meat-and-bone meal is the primary way BSE is transferred to the cattle population.

The animal was selected for testing because, as a non-ambulatory animal, it was considered to be at higher risk for BSE. An initial screening test on the animal in November 2004 was inconclusive, triggering USDA to conduct the internationally accepted confirmatory IHC tests. Those test results were negative. Earlier this month, USDA's Office of the Inspector General recommended further testing of the seven-month-old sample using another internationally recognized confirmatory test, the Western blot. Unlike the IHC, the Western blot was reactive, prompting USDA to send samples from the animal to the Weybridge laboratory for further analysis.

The laboratory in Weybridge, England, is recognized by the World Animal Health Organization, or OIE, as a world reference laboratory for BSE. Weybridge officials this week conducted a combination of rapid, IHC and Western blot testing on tissue samples from the animal in question. At the same time these diagnostic tests were being run by Weybridge, USDA conducted its own additional tests.

As a non-ambulatory, or "downer" animal, the cow was prohibited from entering the human food supply, under an interim final rule in effect since January 2004. Research has shown that BSE is most likely to be found in older non-ambulatory cattle, animals showing signs of central nervous system disorders, injured or emaciated animals, and cattle that have died for unexplained reasons. USDA's testing program targets these groups of animals for testing.

The system of human health protections includes the USDA ban on specified risk materials, or SRM's, from the food supply. SRM's are most likely to contain the BSE agent if it is present in an animal. Additional measures, such as a longstanding ban on importing cattle and beef products from high-risk countries, a ruminant-to-ruminant feed ban, U.S. slaughter practices, and aggressive surveillance provide a series of interlocking safeguards to protect U.S. consumers and animal health.

USDA remains committed to protecting both U.S. consumers and U.S. livestock from BSE, and to that end continues efforts to detect the disease through its enhanced BSE surveillance program. Once sufficient data from the surveillance program has been accumulated, USDA will consult with outside experts to analyze it and determine whether any changes to existing risk management measures are necessary.

This confirmed case of BSE in no way impacts the safety of our nation's food supply. As the epidemiological investigation progresses, USDA will continue to communicate findings in a timely and transparent manner.
redcattle- We must have got the same e-mail at the same time...... :lol: :lol:
Well.......That's it? Not even an excuse about being atypical? This will really make Japan feel good about our testing! I think it's time to punt.
Les said:
I wonder what crow actually tastes like? :p

Can't be too bad, it's been served up in England, France, Japan, Switzerland, Spain, and now here. These Guvment officials must have the recipe down pat. :wink:
kinda lost a lot of its popularity since the whole west nile thing though....
Les said:
I wonder what crow actually tastes like? :p

Lets ask Hay Maker he wrote this 3 days ago:

Hay Maker said:
there sure are alot of "if's"in your post Miss Tam,I dont believe we will ever find a positive case of BSE here in the states,and "if" I could get me a bag of those canadian tags I can guarantee you we wont......good luck
Jason said:
Les said:
I wonder what crow actually tastes like? :p

Lets ask Hay Maker he wrote this 3 days ago:

Hay Maker said:
there sure are alot of "if's"in your post Miss Tam,I dont believe we will ever find a positive case of BSE here in the states,and "if" I could get me a bag of those canadian tags I can guarantee you we wont......good luck

Well I guess I can take the ifs out now and just come right out and ask Haymaker what do you want for supper, crow on the barbque rare med or well done? Maybe crow under glass will suit you? There is prime rib of crow and crow burgers with enough US sipping Whiskey I'm sure anyone of them would do down the old hatch with equal difficulty. :wink: No Tags no Canadian sipping whiskey and no beef as all Texas beef is now tainted and a genuine risk of death if you consume and No LEO to tell you what to think. What is a man to do Haymaker? Maybe if you plead with Leo he will stick around and get you out of this mess. After all he was going to stand and look the consumer right in the eye wasn't he? :lol: :lol:
DJL said:
Haymaker will really need Shelley's bottle of golden brown liquid to calm his nerves now! :shock:

DJL - That lady who's quote is on the bottom of your page, Anne Bradstreet.
Is she by any chance related to Dun Bradstreet? :roll: :roll: :wink:
I wouldn't go getting all cocky Canada, this wouldn't be the first time they "found" a CCIA tag that simply got "misplaced" during all the festivities. This cow could still very easily show as Canadian then we can all have our BBQ crow with Haymaker. Have a good day all! Thanks for reading from Canada.
Anne Bradstreet was a 16th century poet, and I liked the saying, as it suits the Canadian climate. I don't know anything more about her than that.
Mike, Anne Bradstreet was a 17th century poet, as I should be able to see for the fact that her birth/death year are listed behind the quote! Some days I'm just dimmer than others!
SD Stockgrowers Say the US is not part of a "North American Cattle Industry"

Concerned about unanswered questions from USDA

In light of USDA's announcement that a cow slaughtered in the United States that previously tested negative for BSE has now tested positive via a different test, South Dakota Stockgrowers Association leadership reminds producers and consumers of the distinct differences between the United States cattle industry and those of other countries.

"While we have all heard USDA's announcement today, there are still all kinds of unanswered questions," says South Dakota Stockgrowers Association President Ken Knuppe, Buffalo Gap, S.D.

"USDA hasn't confirmed the cow's country of origin; additionally they haven't sufficiently explained the reason for retesting the cow, or why one test is considered more accurate than the other." Knuppe said the South Dakota Stockgrowers Association will await answers from USDA to those and other questions.

Knuppe says that according to USDA, the cow never entered the human food or feed supply. "American consumers can be sure that USA cattle are raised under the strictest health and safety standards in the world. Consumers need not worry about the safety of USA beef because rules are in place to prevent beef from any suspect cattle from entering the food chain."

The South Dakota Stockgrowers Association remains absolutely firm in opposing the reopening of the Canadian border. "Let's take some time to be sure we do things right, rather than rushing to bring Canadian cattle into the U.S. There may very well be scientific answers to our questions about BSE that will, at some point, support the reopening of the Canadian border, but now is clearly not that time."

Knuppe reiterates that the United States holds strict BSE safeguards that ensure consumers that USA beef is the safe and wholesome product that it always has been. "We are not a segment of a so-called 'North American Industry,' we are the United States cattle industry and we will continue to provide a quality product to American consumers."
DJL said:
Mike, Anne Bradstreet was a 17th century poet, as I should be able to see for the fact that her birth/death year are listed behind the quote! Some days I'm just dimmer than others!

We all have those days. Haymaker just has more :!:

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