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

Washington pressing hard to end ban

Help Support Ranchers.net:


Well-known member
Feb 10, 2005
Reaction score
Snow wants 'good Canadian beef' back

Treasury Secretary pushes to end court-ordered ban on imports, sees no spread of mad cow disease.
July 9, 2005: 6:39 PM EDT

CALGARY, Alberta (Reuters) - Washington is "pressing hard" to quash a court-ordered ban on Canadian cattle imports because there is no basis to fears the animals will spread mad cow disease in the United States, Treasury Secretary John Snow said Saturday.

"We are seeking to remove the injunction. We think it's ill-considered," Snow told reporters in Calgary after two days of talks with Canadian Finance Minister Ralph Goodale.

"The border ought to be open. There's no justification for not having it open. We'd like to see that good Canadian beef coming into the United States."

Next week, the U.S. Department of Agriculture will appeal a March ruling by a federal court in Montana that halted imports of Canadian cattle under 30 months of age.

A U.S. rancher group called R-CALF USA, which blames Canada for introducing the disease into the United States, requested the ban just as the border was to reopen after nearly two years of restrictions that have caused billions of dollars of losses in the Canadian beef industry.

Washington and Ottawa have been trying for months to restart trade, saying extensive screening has shown there is no scientific evidence of danger to the U.S. herd.

The issue took on more weight for the Bush administration in June when the United States confirmed its first homegrown mad cow case.

"We need to make sure that questions like this get decided by good science, not on a political basis, so we're pressing hard," Snow said.

The United States first banned Canadian cattle and beef after a case of the brain-wasting disease was discovered in Alberta in May 2003. Three others traced back to the Canadian herd have been detected since.

But the cases were discovered in cattle born before, or just after, a 1997 ban on feed containing animal protein, which is believed to have spread the disease, formally called bovine spongiform encephalopathy.

An international veterinary panel has deemed Canada to have minimal risk of the affliction.

Currently, only Canadian beef from young slaughtered cattle, which carries the least risk, is allowed into the United States.

The court appeal will be heard in Seattle on Wednesday.

Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns has said America's meat industry faces growing pressure to cut operations and lay off workers as the border remains closed. Before the ban, 70 percent of Canada's beef exports went to the United States.

The recent discovery of the U.S. mad cow case showed the rationale behind the court injunction had "absolutely evaporated," Goodale said.

Latest posts