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From: TSS (
Subject: Tender Beef wins mad cow testing OK FOR CANADIANS OR FOR EXPORT OR BOTH???
Date: August 27, 2004 at 12:20 pm PST

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Tender Beef wins mad cow testing OK FOR CANADIANS OR FOR EXPORT OR BOTH???
Date: Fri, 27 Aug 2004 14:14:49 -0500
From: "Terry S. Singeltary Sr."
To: Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy

Tender Beef wins mad cow testing OK


Herald-Tribune staff

A fledgling northwestern Alberta meat-packing company says it has been
cleared by the federal government to become the first Canadian operation
to test cattle for mad cow disease.

Peace Country Tender Beef Co-op officials told the Daily Herald-Tribune
on Thursday the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has confirmed it
will not oppose the co-op's pending request to test all the 30,000
cattle it intends to process annually for the deadly brain-wasting disease.

The controversial request was expected to be refused by the CFIA over
fears non-governmental testing would damage faith in untested beef and
anger the United States, which has forbidden identical testing requests.

However, Tender Beef Co-op and CFIA lawyers reportedly discovered Canada
has no regulations in place to oppose such a move if the co-op uses
CFIA-approved testing methods and facilities.

The CFIA is the only organization in Canada that currently tests for mad
cow, also known as bovine spongiform encephalopathy or BSE.

Tender Beef Co-op interim chairman Neil Peacock of Sexsmith said the
move will finally allow Canadian companies who are willing to shoulder
the cost of testing every cow re-entry into dozens of currently-closed
multimillion-dollar international markets.

"If Canadian companies agree to privately test all their animals for the
disease there is no reason we can't get back into huge beef markets like
Japan, Korea and possibly even the United States," said Peacock, whose
co-op is spending $350,000 to build an on-site testing laboratory and
hire trained staff.

"Allowing companies to do the testing our foreign customers are
demanding should open the world to Canadian beef once again."

More than two dozen countries closed their borders to Canadian beef
after the May 2003 discovery of a single mad cow near Wanham in the
Central Peace.

While some countries like the U.S. have since eased the processed
products ban, Japan, Korea and a host of other nations have refused to
accept Canadian beef unless it is tested for mad cow. Japan spent $21
million and South Korea $470,000 on Canadian beef annually before the
disease's discovery.

Both counties, as well as Germany, have already sent letters indicating
they will reopen their borders to co-op products if its proposed
$4.2-million slaughterhouse is allowed to do the testing and is built to
European Union standards, said Tender Beef Co-op officials.

The federal government has agreed to spend $92.1 million over the next
five years to increase the number of slaughtered cattle tested for mad
cow annually from the current 5,500 to 30,000, but thus far it has not
been enough to convince top international customers to accept Canadian beef.

Facing more than $2-billion in national cattle industry loses and
dwindling international markets, Edmonton MP David Kilgour says allowing
private companies to test all of their own beef will prevent Canada from
permanently losing its top international customers and help revamp the
image of Canadian beef.

"Private testing will let Canada reclaim its position as a top
international beef exporter before we lose all our long-time markets to
counties like Australia, who have not yet faced mad cow problems," said
Kilgour, a federal expert on the cattle industry.

"If Canada doesn't meet demands of 100 per cent tested beef from its
global customers, we risk them buying from elsewhere else and forgetting
Canada still has the best tasting beef in the world."

Kilgour added he saw no reason the CFIA or federal government would take
action to prevent such testing from taking place.

CFIA spokesman Darcy Undseth would not comment on whether the CFIA had
told the co-op it would not oppose its private testing request until an
official request has been made. The CFIA has to approve all testing
methods for mad cow before they can be used on Canadian soil.

Comprehensive private testing is not going to be welcomed by the entire
nation's cattle industry.

Canadian Cattlemen's Association spokeswoman Cindy McCreath warns
allowing companies to test 100 per cent of their beef will actually harm
the national cattle industry.

"Allowing (private testing) does not bring any relief to our current
situation and could in fact be detrimental," said McCreath, noting it is
a lack of slaughter facilities - not a lack of markets - that is hurting
the Canadian cattle prices.

McCreath says if North America consumers feel there is a two-tier beef
safety level and packing plants are forced to test every cow, it will
lower national production by an estimated 30 per cent and actually
increase the current problem.

The Canadian Beef Export Federation, Alberta Cattle Feeder's
Association, and British Columbia Cattleman's Association have all
expressed concerns over allowing private testing.

The Tender Beef Co-op - which will be built in either Beaverlodge or
Dawson Creek, B.C. - has been told it will not be allowed to carry the
CFIA-certified logo on its products and will have additional labelling
restrictions. All co-op products are also expected to include a bar code
allowing customers to track down the cow's original ranch on its website.

Tender Beef Co-op officials envisions the nation's packing industry will
follow in its footsteps on both the testing and tracking methods.

It already has agreements in place with a major Western Canada
supermarket and restaurant chain to buy all of its beef - whether it
gets testing approval or not - with products expected to hit store
shelves in early 2005.

WASHINGTON (DTN)--A Canadian Food Inspection Agency spokesman declined
in mid-April to speculate on whether the CFIA would approve a request
from a Canadian firm to test 100 percent of its cattle for bovine
spongiform encephalopathy so that the Canadian beef industry could
re-enter the Japanese market.


Lists of eligible plants for the various product categories are
available through the Export Library. Plants must meet all EU
requirements in addition to being listed on the appropriate list.
Contact the FSIS Technical Service Center, Export Staff for assistance
at (402) 221-7400.


IF this is done for both the Canadian consumer and Export consumer
this would be great. BUT, is it ??? IS it for Both Export market
and Canadian consumer? IF it strictly export market only and they
don't sell to Canadians or some such BSe as that, it would be just
another slap in the face to every consumer out there. TO have such
establishments set up that removes potential health risks for
Countries/Consumers that are smart enough to recognize them,
and have other establishments that leave those very same risk
factors such as SRMS and other safety precautions, have these
establishments leave these high risk materials and such for the
American/Canadianconsumer, because they are either to stupid
or just don't give a damn,
is beyond me. when it puts others at risk via other routes of transmission
from ones own stupidity and or greed is wrong and should not be allowed
in my opinion. how in the world are you going to stop these TSEs when
you have different rules/regulations for every country, then you have
the iCJD. will not work.


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