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From: TSS ()
Date: May 2, 2005 at 7:24 am PST

-------- Original Message --------
Date: Mon, 2 May 2005 09:02:12 -0500
From: "Terry S. Singeltary Sr."
Reply-To: Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy

##################### Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy #####################

Jerry Redding

(301) 720-6959

Jim Rogers (202) 690-4755


WASHINGTON, April 29, 2005The U.S. Department of Agricultures Animal
and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) today released a summary of
its epidemiological review of Canadas bovine spongiform encephalopathy
(BSE) cases.

Our technical team has completed its review and found that Canadas
epidemiological efforts were not only appropriate but exceeded levels
recommended by an international team of BSE experts, said John
Clifford, APHIS deputy administrator for veterinary services.  Canadas
animal identification program allowed for a successful, comprehensive
epidemiological investigation.

The team, composed of four USDA epidemiologists, traveled to the
Canadian Food Inspection Agencys headquarters in Ottawa from Jan. 24
through 28. The teams objectives included: conducting a thorough review
of Canadas epidemiological investigations following four confirmed
cases in Alberta and evaluating the possibility of a common source of
exposure; evaluating the likelihood that other high-risk animals from
Canada are currently present in the United States; and, evaluating any
feed issues that may have resulted in exposure to U.S. cattle.

The teams report concluded that the geographic and temporal proximity
of the Canadian BSE cases suggests that they may have a common exposure
point. The report also strongly suggests localized exposure through feed
manufactured prior to the feed ban, or soon after its implementation.

Other findings summarized in the report suggest that only 3.4 percent of
known or possible birth cohorts of the four Canadian BSE cases are
believed to have entered the United States. Even at the height of BSE
infection in Europe and the United Kingdom, it was extremely rare to
have more than one animal in the same herd affected with BSE. USDA
believes it is unlikely that any of the imported cattle would have been

Finally, the report evaluated whether any feed issues could have
resulted in exposure to U.S. cattle. Based on distribution patterns and
shipping records, the report concluded that it is extremely unlikely
that any materials from the presumed source of exposure were
incorporated into feed intended for cattle in the United States.

The results of the teams report, as well as the recent feed ban
assessment, confirm that Canada has a system of effective safeguards in
place to protect animal health from BSE. USDA remains confident that
these measures, in conjunction with domestic safeguards, provide the
utmost protection to U.S. consumers and livestock.

For a copy of the technical teams report, visit the APHIS BSE web site

EFSA Scientific Report on the Assessment of the Geographical BSE-Risk
(GBR) of Canada
Last updated: 08 September 2004

Adopted July 2004 (Question N° EFSA-Q-2003-083)

* 165 kB Report

* 108 kB Summary

Summary of the Scientific Report

The European Food Safety Authority and its Scientific Expert Working
Group on the Assessment of the Geographical Bovine Spongiform
Encephalopathy (BSE) Risk (GBR) were asked to provide an up-to-date
scientific report on the GBR in Canada, i.e. the likelihood of the
presence of one or more cattle being infected with BSE, pre-clinically
as well as clinically, in Canada. This scientific report addresses the
GBR of Canada as assessed in 2004 based on data covering the period

The BSE agent was probably imported into the country middle of the
eighties and could have reached domestic cattle in the early nineties.
These cattle imported in the mid eighties could have been rendered in
the late eighties and therefore led to an internal challenge in the
early 90s. It is possible that imported meat and bone meal (MBM) into
Canada reached domestic cattle and led to an internal challenge in the
early 90s.

A certain risk that BSE-infected cattle entered processing in Canada,
and were at least partly rendered for feed, occurred in the early 1990s
when cattle imported from UK in the mid 80s could have been slaughtered.
This risk continued to exist, and grew significantly in the mid 90s
when domestic cattle, infected by imported MBM, reached processing.
Given the low stability of the system, the risk increased over the years
with continued imports of cattle and MBM from BSE risk countries.

EFSA concludes that the current GBR level of Canada is III, i.e. it is
confirmed at a lower level that domestic cattle are (clinically or
pre-clinically) infected with the BSE-agent. As long as the system
remains unstable, it is expected that the GBR continues to grow, even if
no additional external challenges occur.

Publication date: 20 August 2004


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