• If you are having problems logging in please use the Contact Us in the lower right hand corner of the forum page for assistance.

Taiwan Lifts Beef Ban April 16

Help Support Ranchers.net:



Odom announces Taiwan to lift ban on American beef

Special to the Daily News

Commissioner of Agriculture and Forestry Bob Odom announced today the government of Taiwan will lift a ban on American beef imports beginning April 16.

The ban on beef imports stems from the December 2003 discovery of a positive case of Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy, BSE, in Washington state. BSE, commonly known as mad cow disease, has never been confirmed in any Louisiana cattle.

"The lifting of the ban is great news for the Louisiana and the American beef cattle industry," Odom said. "We have testing procedures in place for downed cattle so importers can feel confident in the safety of the beef they are buying from the United States."

Following the confirmed case of BSE in Washington, many countries banned imports of American beef. Most of the bans are still in place.

"These bans have quite an impact on a very important livestock industry," Odom said. "Beef cattle production in Louisiana alone is valued at nearly $324 million annually which makes it critical to our industry for the bans to be lifted. We hope other countries will review the protection measures that have been put in place and will follow Taiwan's lead in lifting import bans."

The Department of Agriculture and Forestry has an ongoing surveillance program for BSE. All "downer" or ill cattle are monitored and tested upon slaughter. Since the middle of 2004, nearly 400 cows have been tested for BSE and all tests have come back negative.

The department is also participating in a nationwide effort to test 270,000 cows in 18 months. To date (9 months into the program), more than 236,000 cows have been tested. Statistically, if 270,000 cows are tested within 18 months, there is more than a 99 percent assurance that BSE is not in the nation's cattle herds.

A letter sent to state officials from the Taipei Economical and Cultural Office in Houston stated the island nation will continue to prohibit the importation of beef brain, spinal cord, back nerve endings and innards.

It also said the age of the cow must not exceed 30 months and only boneless beef will be allowed.

BSE is known to infect brain, spinal column and lower intestine tissue. According to Odom, most meat sold to consumers is muscle meat, which does not contain parts from the brain, spinal column or intestines.

There are more than 12,500 cattle producers in Louisiana. In 2003, the gross farm value for cattle was $291 million and the total value was $324 million.

Latest posts