The Canadian Food Inspection Agency announced Monday that a seven-year-old dairy cow in British Columbia has been confirmed to have bovine spongiform encephalopathy.
CFIA is conducting an investigation; the birth farm has been identified and the animal's herdmates are being traced. Possible sources of infection are also being explored.
According to the CFIA, the age and location of the cow are consistent with other cases detected in Canada. The cow was found by the BSE surveillance program. Because Canada was classified as a Controlled Risk country for BSE, CFIA says this case should not affect exports of Canadian cattle or beef.
R-CALF USA is again calling for USDA to withdraw the over the 30 months of age rule for importing Canadian cattle.
"USDA can no longer operate with its head in the sand when it comes to Canada’s BSE problems," said R-CALF USA CEO Bill Bullard. "This makes the fourth case of Canadian BSE in 2008, and the sixth Canadian case in animals born in 2000-2001."
USDA officially declared the Canadian feed ban began on March 1, 1999. This is the ninth case of BSE in a cow that would be eligible for importation into the U.S.
"It is beyond ridiculous for our government to continue to ignore the obvious risks with Canadian cattle and to put U.S. beef consumers at risk," Bullard said. "As well as risking damage to the reputation of independent U.S. cattle producers and the reputation of the safe, wholesome product they have worked so hard to promote."