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Irish Department of Agriculture confirms Louth BSE case
June 25, 2015

The five year old cow at the centre of the recent BSE suspect case in Co Louth has now been confirmed as positive.

According to the Irish Department of Agriculture it was confirmed as an “isolated” and “classical case.”

In a statement from the Department it said it had disposed of all animals that were exposed to the suspect case and has slaughtered them.

The statement said: “The Department identified all animals potentially exposed to the BSE agent that caused this incident – those born and reared on the birth-farm one year either side of the birth date of the positive animal, and her progeny. These have been slaughtered, excluded from the food and feed chains, and tested.”

The epidemiological investigation has confirmed that:

All 63 cohort animals and four progeny slaughtered and disposed of have tested negative for BSE;

The confirmed case is an isolated case in a single animal;

Both the dam and grand dam of the infected animal tested negative for BSE at slaughter, and therefore vertical transmission is not considered to be a factor in this case;

Whilst the grand-dam of the positive animal was imported, this is not of any significance in epidemiological terms.

No concerns arise regarding the integrity of the commercial feed supply chain or the effectiveness of the feed control systems.

In the 2009 and 2010 period, more than 3,800 feed inspections took place, and almost 2,500 feed samples, including 52 from suppliers to the farm on which the positive case was found, were tested for the presence of processed animal proteins. All tested negative for meat and bone meal. Test results from feed currently on the farm are also negative.

Reacting to the results confirming the isolated case of BSE, Irish Farmers’ Association President Eddie Downey said export and home markets had responded to the news of this case in a calm and balanced manner, as he expected.

Mr Downey said: “Consumers can be re-assured about the robustness of the food safety controls in place in Ireland.

“This and the high quality of Irish food has rightly reassured export markets from all over the world.”

The IFA President has been in close contact with the Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney on the matter.

Mr Downey said he expects the Minister to set up a Beef Forum meeting shortly to review this and progress on the Forums work agenda and to outline how his Department and Bord Bia are redoubling their efforts to open new markets and seek further export opportunities for our growing food sector.

 



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