Supplemental Q&A on Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) - Wednesday, April 25, 2012

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has confirmed the nation’s fourth case of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in a dairy cow from central California. APHIS’ laboratory results confirm that this is a case of atypical BSE.

The animal was sampled for testing for BSE at a rendering facility in California. In this specific instance, the carcass of the animal was held at the rendering facility and then destroyed. It was never presented for processing for human consumption so at no time presented a risk to the food supply.

Read the Fact Sheet HERE

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Video-USDA Chief Veterinary Officer on Surveillance And Milk Safety - Wednesday, April 25, 2012

 USDA Chief Veterinary Officer Dr. John Clifford explains the system of strong interlocking safeguards designed to protect human and animal health.



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Statement by U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack Regarding Detection of BSE In the US - Wednesday, April 25, 2012

"The beef and dairy in the American food supply is safe and USDA remains confident in the health of U.S. cattle. The systems and safeguards in place to protect animal and human health worked as planned to identify this case quickly, and will ensure that it presents no risk to the food supply or to human health. USDA has no reason to believe that any other U.S. animals are currently affected, but we will remain vigilant and committed to the safeguards in place."

Please visit to learn more about BSE and to find updates as USDA continues to investigate this incident and share information as it becomes available. Video of an interview with USDA's Chief Veterinary Officer John Clifford on the BSE case is available HERE.


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To Read this Statement on USDA websites please click HERE

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Blog Post: USDA’s Chief Veterinary Officer on the Recent BSE Case (aka Mad Cow) - Wednesday, April 25, 2012

On April 24, USDA confirmed the nation’s 4th case of Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) in an animal that was sampled for the disease at a rendering facility in central California. This animal was never presented for slaughter for human consumption, so at no time presented a risk to the food and milk supply, or to human health in the United States.

We have a longstanding system of interlocking safeguards against BSE that protects public and animal health in the United States. The most important is the removal of specified risk materials – or the parts of an animal that would contain BSE should an animal have the disease – from all animals presented for slaughter in the United States. USDA inspectors at slaughter facilities also prevent cattle that are nonambulatory or are displaying signs of neurological disease or central nervous system disorders from entering the human food supply.

A strong feed ban protects cattle from the disease. In 1997, the FDA implemented regulations that prohibit the feeding of most mammalian proteins to ruminants, including cattle. This feed ban is the most important measure to prevent the transmission of BSE to cattle.

Read entire blog post HERE

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