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News Releases

Date: 7/18/2017

Title: NCBA Statement on USDA Announcement Regarding Positive Atypical BSE Test Result

WASHINGTON (July 18, 2017) – National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) Cattle Health and Well-being Committee Chairman Jimmy Holliman today issued the following statement regarding the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA’s) announcement of an atypical case of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in an 11-year-old cow in Alabama:

“USDA this afternoon confirmed that an 11-year-old cow that never entered slaughter channels and at no time presented any risk to the food supply was discovered through routine surveillance to test positive for atypical (L-type) BSE. It’s important to note that this type is very different than the classical type of BSE, which occurred mainly in the United Kingdom in the 1980s. BSE is not contagious and the cow announced today posed no risk to human health. The bottom line: all U.S. beef is safe.

“USDA’s ongoing BSE surveillance program has tested more than one million cattle since the program began. The incidence of BSE in the United States is extremely low, and will remain so. The United States currently has a ‘Negligible BSE Risk’ status from the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) – the lowest possible risk in the world.

“We commend USDA and animal health experts for effectively identifying and controlling the potential risks associated with BSE.”

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