Saturday, June 11, 2005



US announces a case of mad-cow disease

A cow has tested positive for mad-cow disease in the United States, agriculture officials announced.

Further tests are planned to confirm the diagnosis because the animal had previously tested disease-free, Doctor John Clifford of the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) said...

A confirmation would bring to two the number of known cases of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in the United States, where a diseased animal was discovered in the northwestern state of Washington in 2003.

That discovery prompted Japan, previously the top market for US beef, to halt imports of cattle products. The new case is likely to deepen woes for US cattlemen and fan fears that the deadly human form of the brain-wasting disease could spread in the United States.

The announcement came the same day that Portugal announced its first suspected case of the human form of mad cow disease while France said it had identified its 13th case of the degenerative brain ailment...

The animal that tested positive in the United States was unable to walk -- a so-called "downer" animal -- and thus banned from human consumption, Clifford said. There is no chance its meat entered the human food supply, he stressed.

The bovine died in Texas in November, according to The Washington Post.

Officials did not indicate the age of the animal or whether it was imported, the daily said.

If it was born after 1997, when the United States banned the use of cattle feed containing animal parts, that could call the effectiveness of the ban into question.

Well, that's Texas for and the land of little regulation for you.

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