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Statement by N.J. Agriculture Secretary on Suspected BSE Case

For Immediate Release: December 23, 2003


Hope Gruzlovic




New Jersey Agriculture Secretary Charles M. Kuperus today issued the following statement regarding the presumptive case of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in Washington state.

“As the U.S. Department of Agriculture investigates the suspected case of BSE in Washington state, New Jersey is prepared to provide any assistance that may be needed. It’s important for everyone to understand that USDA has an aggressive surveillance program designed to protect public health. The public can be reassured by the USDA’s finding that infectious tissues from this cow did not enter the food supply and by a USDA recall of all beef product that day from the slaughterhouse where the cow was slaughtered as an extra precautionary measure. While we have no indication that the Washington case is anything but an isolated incident, as a precautionary measure we are asking our cattle farmers and veterinarians to be extra vigilant for signs of neurological disorders that are symptomatic of this disease.”

New Jersey has a total of 46,000 cattle or calves valued at $46.4 million on 1,600 farms.

In the first six months of this year, a total of 122 cattle in New Jersey that were either downed or displaying neurological symptoms tested negative for BSE.