State gets grant to prevent mad
Source of Article: http://www.sj-r.com/business/x1049844057/State-gets-grant-to-prevent-mad-cow-disease
THE STATE JOURNAL-REGISTER
Posted Dec 05, 2008 @ 07:14 AM
Illinois farm regulators expect to conduct 400 inspections and
1,000 feed tests the next two years with the aid of a nearly $500,000 federal
grant intended to protect the domestic beef industry from mad cow disease.
The grant was announced Thursday.
Three cases of the brain-wasting disease have been reported in the United States since the first was reported in Washington state in
2003. None have been reported in Illinois.
“It’s important not only for the safety of people, but also for the export of
beef,” said Jim Larkin, bureau chief for agricultural product inspections at
the Illinois Department of Agriculture in Springfield.
Larkin said seven other states — Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Texas, Florida, Nebraska and Kansas
— are participating in the cooperative program of enhanced feed inspections .
The USDA early this year approved rules for banning high-risk animal parts,
including brains and spinal cords from older cattle, from use in feed,
including pet food. The USDA has given livestock, feed, rendering and meat
producers until April 2009 to prepare for the new standards.
ranked fifth nationwide in meat exports last year, including beef, with sales
of $405 million, according state figures. Total domestic and export sales
from 19,700 cattle farms totaled $2 billion.
“We’re trying to provide assurance that Illinois beef is safe. It’s also a
reminder to producers to follow best practices. ... There are very serious
financial implications here,” said department spokesman Jeff Squibb.
Larkin said inspections in the next two years in Illinois would include 300 farms and 150