- PARIS (Reuters) - France
on Thursday officially abandoned its long-standing policy of automatically
slaughtering entire cattle herds in which one animal is found to have mad
- The decision, which had been widely expected, follows
an opinion issued in January by French food safety agency AFSSA that said
cattle born after January 1, 2002 could be considered as safe as cattle
coming from uninfected herds.
- "From now on, when a case of BSE (bovine spongiform
encephalopathy) is confirmed in a herd, only the cattle born before January
1, 2002, as well as the direct descendants of the affected animal will
be eliminated," the French farm, health and consumers ministries said
in a joint statement.
- The ministries also said that in herds where the brain-wasting
illness is detected, cows with calves could be kept alive until the calves
- More than 100 people in Britain, France and Ireland have
died or are believed to be dying from the human form of mad cow disease,
variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease, which is thought to be caused by eating
BSE-contaminated meat products.
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