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From: TSS (
Subject: Mad cow testing wanted
Date: October 6, 2004 at 12:24 pm PST

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Mad cow testing wanted
Date: Wed, 06 Oct 2004 14:26:08 -0500
From: "Terry S. Singeltary Sr."
To: Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy

Published Wednesday, October 6, 2004 1:19:53 PM Central Time

By Matthew Butler

of the Times

MONROE -- A Marshall-based company is recruiting dead or downed cattle
from Green County farmers for mad cow testing as part of a program
geared toward gaining international confidence that the United States is
safe from the disease.

Karem Inc., a company which tests cows for mad cow disease, is just one
of many such companies nationwide that is gathering dead and downed cows
for testing. This is part of the United States Department of
Agriculture's plan to test 100,000 cows for mad cow disease between June
to November 2005, according to Karem spokesperson Jake Jacobsen.

Mad cow disease, also known as Bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE),
is linked to a similar form of the incurable and fatal brain-wasting
disease in humans called Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease.

The disease first broke out in the United Kingdom in the mid-1980s and
the result was the slaughter of millions of cattle.

To date, Jacobsen said about 50,000 cows have been tested nationwide and
Karem alone has tested about 3,000. Jacobsen said Wisconsin will account
for about 40 percent of all cows tested in the project.

"Wisconsin is probably the center for mad cow testing in the U.S. We'll
test more cattle here than any other state in the nation," Jacobsen said.

According to Mark Mayer, Green County ag agent, the high amount of cows
being tested in the state is a sensible strategy. Mayer said Wisconsin
ranks ninth in the nation for the number of cattle or calves and is No.
2 in the nation for milk cattle, "which is significant because these are
typically over 30 months of age when slaughtered, which makes Wisconsin
a likely state to test," Mayer said.

The 30-month old age of cows is significant since cows in this country
are slaughtered between 18 and 20 months of age. Mad cow disease has
never been found in a cow less than 30-months of age, meaning it's
unlikely cows in this country would have mad cow disease, according to
U.S. Department of Agriculture secretary Ann Veneman.

"Most cows in this country are slaughtered at less than 30 months of age
and we know that those cattle are at a very low risk of BSE because it
usually doesn't develop in a cow that's younger than 30 months of age,"
Veneman said in an interview with CNN.

The first case of the disease in North America came in May 2003 in
Alberta, Canada. Then in December of that same year, the first case in
the United States sprung up in Washington state. Shortly thereafter,
Japan, western Europe, New Zealand and Australia shut down beef export
from the U.S.

In an effort to regain consumer confidence and re-open beef exports to
these countries, the USDA began its program to test 100,000 cows in the

"We have to prove to the rest of the world through an intense, very well
thought out testing program so those exports will open up again,"
Jacobsen said.

Jacobsen will be traveling around the county in the next few weeks
hoping to find farmers who are willing to allow Karem to pick up their
dead and downed cows. The pickup service, Jacobsen said, will be free of

According to Mayer, it is vital that area farmers agree to have their
cows picked up for testing.

"It's very important to maintain a good healthy product because U.S.
(beef) producers saw what happened in Canada, which brought beef prices
down," Mayer said.

Mayer added that now is the time to test because Japan, in particular,
has suffered since calling off imports of beef from the U.S.

"I know the Japan restaurant and food industries have been pushing to
open back up because there is a shortage of beef and prices have risen,"
Mayer said.

Jacobsen said the bulk of Karem's pickup of dead and downed cows is
likely to take place in November and December when Jacobsen says more
cows will be available because the colder weather causes more stress on

Farmers interested in having their dead or downed cattle collected by
Karem can contact Jacobsen at (800) 655-1705.

-- Matthew Butler

can be reached at


> This is part of the United States Department of Agriculture's plan to
> test 100,000 cows for mad cow disease between June to November 2005,
> according to Karem spokesperson Jake Jacobsen.

well, seem we have now gone from testing some 440,000 cattle
by 2005 in this 'enhanced USA BSE cover-up' to testing some
100,000, according to this person. IF this is the case, it does not
surprise me. you have to figure, we are sending the high risk CNS
suspicious mad cows to the render without testing and that one
in TEXAS was just the tip of the ice-burg, UPI SAYS 500+...
NO way GW et al will announce any BSE/TSE cow before


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