4/24/2012 12:00:00 AM
Beef Safety Confirmed Via Targeted BSE Surveillance Program
ARVADA, April 24, 2012 - USDA Chief Veterinary Officer John Clifford today confirmed an atypical case of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in a dairy cow from central California.
Terry Fankhauser, Executive Vice President of the Colorado Cattlemen’s Association, stated that “The USDA confirmed this afternoon a positive test result as part of its targeted surveillance program to test cattle for BSE. USDA has confirmed this dairy animal was never presented for human consumption and poses zero risk to human health. The bottom line remains the same – all U.S. beef is safe.”
America’s cattle producers’ top priority is raising healthy cattle. As such, the U.S. beef community has collaborated with and worked with animal health experts and government to put in place multiple interlocking safeguards over the past two decades to prevent BSE from taking hold in the United States.
The beef industry continues to work with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and other food chain partners to further strengthen U.S. food safety systems overall. In fact, the industry invests $350 million annually in beef safety efforts. Beef producers alone have invested more than $25 million since 1993 in beef safety research, and cases of BSE have dropped by 99% since the peak in 1992.
USDA Chief Veterinary Officer John Clifford said the California case "in no way affects the United States' BSE status as determined by the OIE (World Organization for Animal Health)" and therefore should not affect U.S. trade.
We commend USDA and animal health experts for effectively identifying and eliminating the potential risks associated with BSE, as well as maintaining top standards for effective regulations and safe, healthy beef.
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Colorado Cattlemen’s Association (CCA) is the state’s only nonprofit trade organization exclusively representing Colorado’s beef producers. Founded in 1867, CCA is the nation’s oldest state cattlemen’s association.