Calgary, AB – Canada’s beef cattle industry takes Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) surveillance seriously. The finding of a case of BSE in beef cow in Alberta, while unfortunate, demonstrates the robustness of the National BSE Surveillance Program Canada has in place. BSE is on the decline in Canada and globally. It is not unexpected for cases to be found as efforts continue around the world to eradicate classic BSE. This is an isolated case; Canada’s previous confirmed BSE case was reported in 2011.
The CCA subscribes to the World Organisation for Animal Health’s (OIE) science-based rules for trade. This finding will not impact Canada’s controlled risk status under the OIE achieved in 2007 and current exports of Canadian cattle and beef should not be impacted. Canadian beef gained this status due to Canada’s effective BSE surveillance, mitigation and eradication measures. This categorization allows for the safe trade in beef from cattle of all ages under conditions which Canada meets.
The CCA has complete confidence in the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) and the investigation underway. No part of the animal’s carcass entered the human food or animal feed systems which are consistent with Canada’s control measures in place since 2003 and 2007, respectively.