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Confirmed BSE Cases

April 24, 2012 (US)

USDA released a statement regarding the detection of the fourth case of BSE in the United States. The case - a dairy cow from central California - was found through routine surveillance. The animal did not enter the food chain. BSE is not transmitted in milk. There is no threat to human health or the food supply/chain at this time. To read the rest of the statement go to this link   -- http://content.govdelivery.com/bulletins/gd/USDAOC-3d6265?reqfrom=share 

February 25, 2010 (Canada)

On March 10, 2010 The Canadian Food Inspection Service (CFIA) confirmed that a 72 month old Angus beef cow from Alberta had tested positive for bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) on February 25th. This is Canada's 17th reported case of BSE.  As of August 2009 CFIA no longer notifies the public or media of each new case as it is diagnosed.  May 15, 2009 (Canada)

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has confirmed bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in an 80-month-old dairy cow from Alberta. No part of the animal’s carcass entered the human food or animal feed systems.

November 17, 2008 (Canada)

 The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has confirmed bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in a seven-year-old dairy cow from British Columbia. No part of the animal’s carcass entered the human food or animal feed systems.

February 26, 2008 (Canada)

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has confirmed bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in a six-year-old dairy cow from Alberta. The animal's carcass is under CFIA control, and no part of it entered the human food or animal feed systems.

The CFIA has confirmed the animal’s birthdate as December 21, 2001. Its age and location are consistent with previous cases detected in Canada This case will not affect Canada’s Controlled Risk country status, as recognized by the World Organization for Animal Health. This status clearly acknowledges the effectiveness of Canada’s surveillance, risk mitigation and eradication measures. Based on science, it is not expected that this case should impact access to any of Canada’s current international markets for cattle and beef. 

December 18, 2007 (Canada)

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has confirmed the diagnosis of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in a 13-year-old beef cow from Alberta. The animal's carcass is under CFIA control, and no part of it entered the human food or animal feed systems. 

May 2, 2007 (Canada)

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has confirmed the diagnosis of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in a mature dairy cow from British Columbia. The animal's carcass is under CFIA control, and no part of it entered the human food or animal feed systems .Preliminary information indicates that the age of the animal (66 months) falls well within the age range of previous cases detected in Canada and is consistent with the recognized average incubation period of the disease. This signifies that the animal was exposed to a very small amount of infective material, most likely during its first year of life. 

February 7, 2007 (Canada)

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) confirmed the diagnosis of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in a mature bull from Alberta. The animal's carcass or any part did not enter the food chain. Preliminary information indicates that the age of the animal falls well within the age range of previous cases detected in Canada under the national BSE surveillance program. This signifies that the animal was exposed to a very small amount of infective material, most likely during its first year of life.

August 23, 2006 (Canada)

A mature beef cow from Alberta was diagnosed with BSE. Examination by a veterinarian and information from the owner indicated that the cow was 8 to 10 years old and was therefore born at about the time of the 1997 ruminant-to-ruminant feed ban.

July 13, 2006 (Canada)

A 50 month old dairy cow from Alberta, Canada was confirmed positive for BSE by the National Reference Laboratory in Winnepeg. The cow was born after the 1997 ruminant-to-ruminant feed ban. The Canadian Food Inspection Service is working with the owner of the birth farm to determine how the cow was exposed to BSE.

July 4, 2006 (Canada)

A 15 year old beef cow from Manitoba was confirmed positive for BSE through Canada's Enhanced BSE Surveillance Program. The cow was purchased by the current owner in 1992 meaning it was alive before the 1997 ruminant-to-ruminant feed ban. The CFIA is currently trying to determine the birth farm of the cow and the feed used.

April 6, 2006 (Canada)

A six year old dairy cow from British Columbia was confirmed positive for BSE by the National Centre for Foreign Animal Disease in Winnepeg. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency was able to confirm the cow's exact date of birth and herd of origin.  CFIA officials believe that contaminated feed is the most likely source although this animal was born after the 1997 ruminant-to-ruminant feed ban. CFIA and USDA officials were able to identify 148 animals that came from the same herd. No other animal from this group tested positive for BSE. 


March 13, 2006 (US)

On March 10, a local veterinarian was called to examine a 'downer' cow on a farm in Alabama. As part of the enhanced national surveillance program, the animal was humanely euthanized and samples were collected for BSE testing. The BSE rapid tests were conducted at the animal disease diagnostic laboratory at the University of Georgia. The tests came back as inconclusive.  As part of the USDA's BSE testing protocol, the samples were then sent to the National Veterinary Services Laboratory in Ames, Iowa for two different confirmatory tests: immunohistochemistry and Western blot. The Western blot test was positive for BSE.

It was determined by examination of the cow's teeth, that she was more than 10 years old. It is possible that she was exposed to contaminated feed produced prior to the ruminant-to-ruminant feed ban of 1997. To date, the USDA has been unable to determine from which herd the cow originally came.


January 24, 2006 (Canada)

BSE was confirmed in a six year old cow in Alberta, Canada. The cow was detected through the Canadian Food Inspection Agency's national surveillance program which has tested more than 87,000 animals since 2003. As with the other confirmed BSE cases in Canada, this cow is believed to have contracted the disease from contaminated feed.

June 24, 2005 (US)

The cow in question was a 'downer' that was prevented from entering the food supply in accordance with federal guidelines. After a sample of the brain was obtained, the carcass was sent to a rendering facility. The initial BSE rapid test results were inconclusive. In accordance with USDA protocol and international standards, the sample was retested using immunohistochemistry procedures.  Again, the sample tested negative.  During an independent review of BSE sampling procedures in June 2005, the USDA Office of the Inspector General recommended that this sample be retested using the Western Blot technique.  The sample tested positive for BSE. The Veterinary Laboratories Agency in Weybridge, England (world reference laboratory for BSE) confirmed the positive result.

As a result of the confirmed positive test from the laboratory in Weybridge, Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns urged the USDA to develop new BSE testing protocols.  Under the new protocol, samples that were inconclusive after the BSE rapid test results would then undergo dual confirmatory testing using both the immunohistochemistry and Western blot tests. A positive result on either test would be considered a confirmation for BSE.

 

January 2 and 11, 2005 (Canada)

January 2, 2005: A dairy cow from Alberta was confirmed positive for BSE. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency determined the cow's farm of origin and worked to identify other animals with the same risk factors. The original dairy cow was born in 1996 before the ruminant-to-ruminant feeding ban in 1997. It is believed that the cow contracted BSE from her feed. 

January 11, 2005: A 'downer' beef cow was found on a farm in Alberta, Canada. She was humanely euthanized by a local veterinarian and sampled for BSE as part of the enhanced national surveillance efforts of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.  The samples were sent to Alberta Agriculture, Food and Rural Development Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathy laboratory for a BSE rapid screening test. The samples were tested twice and both were inconclusive.  The samples were then sent to the National Centre for Foreign Animal Diseases laboratory in Winnepeg. The cow was confirmed positive for BSE. Unlike the January 2 dairy cow, this cow was born after the 1997 ruminant-to-ruminant feed ban. The CFIA identified the birth cohorts of this cow for surveillance and testing and initiated a feed investigation. No other cattle were confirmed positive for BSE. Although it is impossible to determine conclusively the source of the BSE, it is believed that this cow was exposed to contaminated feed due to the lag time in implementation of the ruminant-to-ruminant feed ban.

These confirmed cases of BSE prompted the USDA to continue the ban on imports of Canadian beef.  This ban has been in place since August 2003 and allows a very limited number of ruminant products into the United States. These products are:

  • Boneless sheep/goat meat from animals under 12 months of age
  • Boneless bovine meat from cattle under 30 months of age
  • Boneless veal from calves no older than 36 weeks at slaughter
  • Fresh or frozen beef liver
  • Veterinary vaccines for non-ruminant administration
  • Pet products and feed ingredients made from non-ruminant material when produced in facilitites with dedicated processing lines that eliminate cross contamination with ruminant material
  • Wild ruminant game for personal use

 


December 23, 2003 (US)

Secretary Veneman's BSE Containment Plan

  • Downer cattle are banned from the food chain
  • Cattle must be held until confirmed negative for BSE
  • Specified Risk Material like brain, spinal cord and vertebral column cannot enter the food supply
  • Advanced Meat Recovery product cannot contain Specified Risk Material
  • Air-injection stunning of cattle is banned
  • Mechanically separated meat is banned from human consumption

The BSE world reference laboratory in Weybridge, England confirmed the first case of BSE in a cow in the United States. The incident occurred on December 9, 2003 when a single non-ambulatory (downer) Holstein cow was slaughtered at Vern’s Moses Lake Meats in Washington State. The cow was a 6 ½ year old dairy cow that originated from a herd in Alberta, Canada. The age of the cow was significant in that she was born before the 1997 feed ban that prohibited the addition of ruminant protein to ruminant feeds. This measure was put in place to prevent BSE contaminated material from entering the cattle food supply.

Although no contaminated meat from this cow made it into the food supply, imports of United States beef were banned in several countries including Japan and Korea. In addition, several areas for improvement in BSE containment and animal identification were found.  This confirmed case of BSE in the United States prompted Secretary of Agriculture Ann Veneman to announce additional safeguards to prevent meat from cattle with BSE from entering the food supply. In addition, the USDA announced plans to develop a National Animal Identification System (NAIS) so that any animal or production facility exposed to a foreign animal disease may be more rapidly identified.  

 


Last Updated:4/27/2012 4:36 PM
 


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