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Quick response averts market scare in mad cow case

SeattlePI.com
Thursday, 26 April 2012

Quick response averts market scare in mad cow case
Associated Press
Copyright 2012 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Updated 12:25 a.m., Thursday, April 26, 2012

[...] a severe drought in the Southwest cut cattle herd numbers to their lowest level in more than 60 years. The infected dairy cow, only the fourth ever discovered in the United States, was found as part of an Agriculture Department program that tests about 40,000 cows a year for the fatal brain disease. Mad cow disease, or bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), is fatal to cows and can cause a fatal human brain disease in people who eat tainted beef. The swift response also reflected a desire to avoid a repeat of the pink slime scare, which erupted when consumers learned some ground meat contained scraps of beef treated with ammonium hydroxide. On Tuesday, meat industry groups, food companies and the American Veterinary Medical Association quickly issued statements and updated their websites, seeking to reassure the public that the nation's meat supply is safe. Ma, however, is caught between growing popular opposition to U.S. beef and a parallel desire not to endanger the resumption of stalled trade talks, which are seen as crucial to keeping up the island's competitive edge in global trade. Live cattle futures markets plummeted Tuesday, even before the Agriculture Department's announcement of the mad cow discovery, but they recovered Wednesday as it became clearer that exports would not take a significant hit.
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