Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Alberta to analyze cost-benefits of additional BSE testing in cattle

Alberta to analyze cost-benefits of additional BSE testing in cattle

by: Government of Alberta May 5th, 2010

An agriculture-based think-tank will do an analysis of whether the cost of conducting client-driven optional BSE testing in animals before or after slaughter would be beneficial in the marketplace. The work which is being done by the George Morris Centre will help to determine whether pre or post-slaughter testing would allow Canadian products access to export markets that are currently not available, potentially creating a greater demand for Canadian beef.

“In Alberta, in accordance with internationally accepted standards, we currently test those animals that meet the criteria for BSE testing,” said Jack Hayden, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development. “This study is separate from our world-class surveillance system and the other steps that we already take to ensure the safety of our beef products for consumers. Alberta’s beef industry is market-driven, however, we need to constantly be evolving as science and technology progresses in order to further enhance our market opportunities.”

“At this time, Canadian products are still restricted in certain markets that could be important to industry,” said Dr. Kevin Keough, Executive Director, Alberta Prion Research Institute. “This study will provide an independent look at the issue, as well as reliable data and analysis.”

“Canada’s economic losses stemming from the 2003 BSE crisis are significant and research like this is needed to support Canada’s beef industry,” said Dr. Neil Cashman, Scientific Director of PrioNet Canada. “This analysis plays an important part in the process to determine how we can help restore international consumer’s confidence in Canadian beef.”

The Alberta Prion Research Institute and PrioNet Canada, in partnership with the Alberta Livestock and Meat Agency, requested submissions for proposals in November 2009, and selected the George Morris Centre.

“We submitted a proposal for the project because the cost-benefit analysis of BSE testing in cattle is a significant issue and we thought we would make a good contribution to it,” said Al Mussell, Senior Research Associate, George Morris Centre.

The cost of the project is approximately $179,000 with the Alberta Livestock and Meat Agency contributing 50 per cent of the funds. PrioNet Canada and The Alberta Prion Research Institute are each contributing the remaining amount equally.

The Alberta Livestock and Meat Agency, a provincial government agency, contributes ideas, information and investment as it works with industry partners towards achieving the goal of a sustainable, profitable and internationally respected livestock and meat industry. For more information on ALMA, visit

The Alberta Prion Research Institute is committed to the prevention, mitigation and treatment of prion and protein misfolding diseases in animals and humans. APRI invests in fundamental and applied research that takes an interdisciplinary approach to solving the prion mystery. It supports projects that focus on innovation and invention.

PrioNet Canada is a Network of Centres of Excellence for research into prions and prion diseases. Prion diseases are untreatable, transmissible, and fatal neurodegenerative diseases of both humans and animals. -30- Editors’ note: Backgrounder attached.

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TEST, and they will come.

NO need to spend 10's of thousands of dollars on a think tank about that.

TEST all agriculture producing livestock animals for TSE, and Country's all around the globe will come for your product. but it must be done right.

MOST of the world knows of the USDA et al's blunder on testing and surveillance for BSE in the USA.

Personally, up until this last mad cow in Canada, I trusted, and was fairly pleased with Canada's effort to eradicate BSE. However, since the attempted cover-up for economic purposes of the last mad cow in Canada, sadly, it seems they finally said to hell with it, and just started taking pages out of the USDA's et al book of deceit on TSE.

Hidden from Public for Almost 2 Weeks: Canada’s 18th BSE-Infected Cow

Feb. 25 Confirmation of BSE-Positive Cow Kept Secret

March 10, 2010 Billings, Mont. – Yet again, R-CALF USA learned through the rumor mill yesterday that Canada had detected the country’s 18th case of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in a 72-month-old Angus cow. Although Canadian officials were purported to have notified the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) last week, a phone call this morning to OIE revealed that Canada had not yet notified OIE of this latest discovery. However, R-CALF USA Communications Coordinator Shae Dodson was told via telephone by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) that Canada, indeed, had discovered yet another case of BSE. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) later verified CFIA’s report.

“The CFIA said the BSE-positive case was confirmed Feb. 25, 2010, which means the CFIA and all other governments who knew about this latest BSE case kept it a secret from the public for almost two weeks, said R-CALF USA CEO Bill Bullard. “If we had not discovered this information, the public may never have known.”

At six years of age, this particular animal would have been born in 2003 or 2004, making her the 18th Canadian-born BSE case and the 11th BSE-positive animal eligible to be exported to the United States. In November 2007, USDA implemented the OTM (over-30-months) Rule that allows the U.S. to import into the U.S. these high-risk Canadian cattle over 30 months of age, as long as such cattle were born after March 1, 1999.

Already this year, well over 40,000 older Canadian cows and bulls have been imported into the United States for domestic slaughter.

“Consumers – now more than ever – should be telling their grocers they want the products in the meat counter labeled with country-of-origin information so they can decide on their own whether to avoid products from countries with ongoing disease problems, particularly now that USDA chooses not to disclose such important disease information,” said R-CALF USA President/Region VI Director Max Thornsberry, a Missouri veterinarian who also chairs the group’s animal health committee.

“Forty organizations representing consumers, the cattle industry and other livestock and farming interests sent a joint letter to USDA in November 2009 urging the new Administration to restore the United States’ weakened import standards that are exposing the U.S. to a heightened risk of BSE,” said Thornsberry. “It’s well past time for Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack to listen to U.S. citizens and overturn the OTM Rule that is allowing the continuous introduction of BSE into the United States.

“There are no restrictions on these higher-risk OTM cattle when they enter the United States,” he continued. “These higher-risk cattle are allowed to commingle with the U.S. herd, enter the U.S. food supply and enter the non-ruminant U.S. animal feed system. USDA has an absolute duty to protect the U.S. cattle herd as well as U.S. consumers from the introduction of BSE that is known to be occurring under the OTM Rule, and R-CALF is again calling on USDA to immediately rescind the OTM Rule.”

“Since implementation of the 2007 OTM Rule, Canada has detected seven new cases of BSE, six of which met USDA’s age requirement to be imported into the United States,” Bullard said. “It is alarming that while Canada’s BSE problem is ongoing, Canada has significantly reduced its surveillance testing and likely is detecting only a fraction of the BSE cases in the Canadian herd. This haphazard approach to BSE is endangering not only U.S. beef consumers, but the U.S. cattle herd, and we want USDA to immediately halt Canadian cattle imports.”

According to Canadian data, Canada tested only 34,617 cattle for BSE in 2009. In 2008, 48,804 cattle were tested. In 2007, approximately 59,000 head were tested, and in January 2010, only 3,536 Canadian cattle were tested for the disease.

“Canada’s BSE testing is voluntary, and based on the significant numbers of BSE-positive cattle detected under very limited testing, Canada’s BSE prevalence rate is likely far higher than USDA estimated when it predicted that the OTM Rule would result in the importation of 19 BSE-infected cattle during the 20 years covered by USDA’s risk modeling,” Bullard pointed out. “The result is that the United States is assuming a much higher risk for the introduction of BSE than the negligible risk that USDA claims.”

R-CALF USA, the South Dakota Stockgrowers Association, five national consumer groups and several individual ranchers have a pending lawsuit against USDA’s OTM Rule in a South Dakota federal court. As a result of this litigation, the court ordered USDA to reopen the OTM Rule and “to revise any provisions of the OTM Rule it deems necessary.”

Thursday, October 18, 2007


Friday, August 29, 2008




Date: June 21, 2007 at 2:49 pm PST

Owner and Corporation Plead Guilty to Defrauding Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) Surveillance Program

An Arizona meat processing company and its owner pled guilty in February 2007 to charges of theft of Government funds, mail fraud, and wire fraud. The owner and his company defrauded the BSE Surveillance Program when they falsified BSE Surveillance Data Collection Forms and then submitted payment requests to USDA for the services. In addition to the targeted sample population (those cattle that were more than 30 months old or had other risk factors for BSE), the owner submitted to USDA, or caused to be submitted, BSE obex (brain stem) samples from healthy USDA-inspected cattle. As a result, the owner fraudulently received approximately $390,000. Sentencing is scheduled for May 2007.


Topics that will be covered in ongoing or planned reviews under Goal 1 include:

soundness of BSE maintenance sampling (APHIS), implementation of Performance-Based Inspection System enhancements for specified risk material (SRM) violations and improved inspection controls over SRMs (FSIS and APHIS),


The findings and recommendations from these efforts will be covered in future semiannual reports as the relevant audits and investigations are completed.


-MORE Office of the United States Attorney District of Arizona FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE For Information Contact Public Affairs February 16, 2007 WYN HORNBUCKLE Telephone: (602) 514-7625 Cell: (602) 525-2681


PHOENIX -- Farm Fresh Meats, Inc. and Roland Emerson Farabee, 55, of Maricopa, Arizona, pleaded guilty to stealing $390,000 in government funds, mail fraud and wire fraud, in federal district court in Phoenix. U.S. Attorney Daniel Knauss stated, “The integrity of the system that tests for mad cow disease relies upon the honest cooperation of enterprises like Farm Fresh Meats. Without that honest cooperation, consumers both in the U.S. and internationally are at risk. We want to thank the USDA’s Office of Inspector General for their continuing efforts to safeguard the public health and enforce the law.” Farm Fresh Meats and Farabee were charged by Information with theft of government funds, mail fraud and wire fraud. According to the Information, on June 7, 2004, Farabee, on behalf of Farm Fresh Meats, signed a contract with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (the “USDA Agreement”) to collect obex samples from cattle at high risk of mad cow disease (the “Targeted Cattle Population”). The Targeted Cattle Population consisted of the following cattle: cattle over thirty months of age; nonambulatory cattle; cattle exhibiting signs of central nervous system disorders; cattle exhibiting signs of mad cow disease; and dead cattle. Pursuant to the USDA Agreement, the USDA agreed to pay Farm Fresh Meats $150 per obex sample for collecting obex samples from cattle within the Targeted Cattle Population, and submitting the obex samples to a USDA laboratory for mad cow disease testing. Farm Fresh Meats further agreed to maintain in cold storage the sampled cattle carcasses and heads until the test results were received by Farm Fresh Meats.

Evidence uncovered during the government’s investigation established that Farm Fresh Meats and Farabee submitted samples from cattle outside the Targeted Cattle Population. Specifically, Farm Fresh Meats and Farabee submitted, or caused to be submitted, obex samples from healthy, USDA inspected cattle, in order to steal government moneys.

Evidence collected also demonstrated that Farm Fresh Meats and Farabee failed to maintain cattle carcasses and heads pending test results and falsified corporate books and records to conceal their malfeasance. Such actions, to the extent an obex sample tested positive (fortunately, none did), could have jeopardized the USDA’s ability to identify the diseased animal and pinpoint its place of origin. On Wednesday, February 14, 2007, Farm Fresh Meats and Farabee pleaded guilty to stealing government funds and using the mails and wires to effect the scheme. According to their guilty pleas:

(a) Farm Fresh Meats collected, and Farabee directed others to collect, obex samples from cattle outside the Targeted Cattle Population, which were not subject to payment by the USDA;

(b) Farm Fresh Meats 2 and Farabee caused to be submitted payment requests to the USDA knowing that the requests were based on obex samples that were not subject to payment under the USDA Agreement;

(c) Farm Fresh Meats completed and submitted, and Farabee directed others to complete and submit, BSE Surveillance Data Collection Forms to the USDA’s testing laboratory that were false and misleading;

(d) Farm Fresh Meats completed and submitted, and Farabee directed others to complete and submit, BSE Surveillance Submission Forms filed with the USDA that were false and misleading;

(e) Farm Fresh Meats falsified, and Farabee directed others to falsify, internal Farm Fresh Meats documents to conceal the fact that Farm Fresh Meats was seeking and obtaining payment from the USDA for obex samples obtained from cattle outside the Targeted Cattle Population; and

(f) Farm Fresh Meats failed to comply with, and Farabee directed others to fail to comply with, the USDA Agreement by discarding cattle carcasses and heads prior to receiving BSE test results. A conviction for theft of government funds carries a maximum penalty of 10 years imprisonment. Mail fraud and wire fraud convictions carry a maximum penalty of 20 years imprisonment. Convictions for the above referenced violations also carry a maximum fine of $250,000 for individuals and $500,000 for organizations. In determining an actual sentence, Judge Earl H. Carroll will consult the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines, which provide appropriate sentencing ranges. The judge, however, is not bound by those guidelines in determining a sentence.

Sentencing is set before Judge Earl H. Carroll on May 14, 2007. The investigation in this case was conducted by Assistant Special Agent in Charge Alejandro Quintero, United States Department of Agriculture, Office of Inspector General. The prosecution is being handled by Robert Long, Assistant U.S. Attorney, District of Arizona, Phoenix. CASE NUMBER: CR-07-00160-PHX-EHC RELEASE NUMBER: 2007-051(Farabee) # # #

Monday, April 12, 2010

Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison says NO to safer food and S. 510 FDA Food Safety Modernization Act of 2009

Saturday, April 10, 2010


Wednesday, April 28, 2010




I find it appauling that in 2010, the O.I.E. is still going by science on Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathy that is decades old. New emerging strains of Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathy have emerged, in different species, along with new science that shows these new strains of T.S.E. are more virulent than the c-B.S.E. MOST every Country that went by the O.I.E. B.S.E. guidelines, most all came down with B.S.E. THE O.I.E. has now shown they are nothing more than a National Trading Brokerage for all strains of animal T.S.E. AS i said before, O.I.E. should hang up there jock strap now, since it appears they will buckle every time a country makes some political hay about trade protocol, commodities and futures. IF they are not going to be science based, they should do everyone a favor and dissolve there organization. ...

still disgusted in Bacliff, Texas USA 77518

Sunday, April 4, 2010


Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Transmissible Spongiform encephalopathy (TSE) animal and human TSE in North America

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Scientific Opinion on Analytical sensitivity of approved TSE rapid tests – new data for assessment of two rapid tests

Terry S. Singeltary Sr.
P.O. Box 42
Bacliff, Texas USA 77518

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