Canada Traces BSE Cohorts; 1 Animal Exported To U.S.

CANADA - The Canadian Food Inspection Agency has traced most of the birth and feed cohorts of the mature bull born in 2000 in Alberta that tested positive for BSE earlier this year.
calendar icon 10 April 2007
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One of the birth cohorts was exported to the United States in 2002, said a spokeswoman for the USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service. The animal, a heifer, was sent to an unnamed Nebraska feedlot for a few months, then on to slaughter at an unnamed Nebraska facility, Andrea McNally said in a telephone interview.

McNally said there was "negligible risk" from the import since scientific data shows it is rare to find another infected animal in the same herd as a BSE-positive animal. She also stressed that the animal would have been routinely inspected at slaughter.

Based on information from the Alberta producer and from DNA testing, the unregistered Angus bull was born in the spring of 2000 on the farm where it died sometime between Jan. 20 and Jan. 22, the CFIA said in a March 26 update. The cause of death could not be determined, the CFIA said.

The investigation, using World Organization for Animal Health guidelines, focused on tracing cattle born in the same herd within 12 months of the BSE-positive bull, cattle that might have consumed the same feed - particularly during the first year of life - and on the feed itself.

The CFIA reported that 593 animals, in addition to the BSE-positive bull, were born or raised on the farm, including animals born during 1999, 2000 and 2001. Fifty-seven live animals were retained by the producer and are quarantined. None will be allowed into the food or feed chains on their death or destruction, the CFIA said.

Of the remaining animals traced by the CFIA, 411 were confirmed to have died or been slaughtered, 49 were presumed to have died or been slaughtered and one was exported to the United States.

Source: Capital Press
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