Although the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service presented paperwork asking for a higher bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) status from the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE), the United States did not get a change in status and remains a controlled BSE risk status, the same category as Canada and Mexico.
Under OIE regulations, there are three BSE risk categories - negligible, controlled and undetermined risk. At the 78th OIE annual general session held in Paris from May 23-28, world delegates decided on the member countries' BSE status. There are 176 countries who are members of the OIE.
Controlled-risk status is granted to countries where surveillance is adequate and there are measures in place to prevent an outbreak of the disease, even though some cases of BSE are still found, according to the OIE.
In addition to the United States, Canada and Mexico, those countries with a controlled BSE risk include Austria, Greece, Belgium, Hungary, Netherlands, Brazil, Ireland, Panama, Italy, Poland, Korea, Chinese Taipei, Japan, Portugal, Colombia, Slovak Republic, Cyprus, Latvia, Slovenia, Czech Republic, Lichtenstein, Spain, Denmark, Lithuania, Switzerland, Estonia, Luxembourg, United Kingdom, France, Malta and Germany.
OIE members who have a negligible BSE risk status include Argentina, India, Peru, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Chile, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Paraguay, Uruguay and Iceland.
Reprinted in part from The Prairie Star