Tuesday, May 13, 2014

More BSE Detection in Brazil

ALMOST a year and a half after declaring an atypical BSE (Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy) case in Parana state in Brazil, the OIE (World Organisation for Animal Health) has confirmed a BSE case in Mato Grosso state – the largest beef producer in the country and the second largest exporter, reports Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA).

According to the latest OIE report, the source of the outbreak (or origin of infection) is unknown or inconclusive. Investigations have indicated a likely isolated case of an atypical form as the animal was raised under an extensive system (grass-fed with added mineral salt only) and slaughtered at an advanced age – approximately 12 years old. During the epidemiological investigation, 49 animals from the cohort, which did not show clinical signs of the disease, were destroyed.

Mato Grosso state has a significant role in the Brazilian beef industry with a herd of 28.4 million head (Acrimat) and accounted for 19 per cent of total exports in 2013 with significant shipments to Venezuela, Hong Kong and Egypt.

According to MAPA (Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Supply) only Peru has temporarily banned Brazilian beef so far – a 180 day ban was placed last Thursday. Beef exports to Peru totalled 1562 tonnes swt in 2013.
typical brahman cattle produced in tropical areas of the world

As of today, it also seems as if Egypt has also banned Brazilian beef.  Probably not unexpected, as they source meat from Mato Grasso state.  There are sure to be more......

While not lording it over Brazil as a significant competitor to Australia in international markets, it does highlight the ultra importance of Australia working very hard to continue to remain free of the BSE problems, and along with other major animal diseases including foot and mouth.

Australia remaining free of these diseases is of urgency.  We do not want to be in a clean up mode; it would be disastrous for our beef trade! 

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