On Feb. 18 a six-year-old dairy cow in Alberta, Canada was confirmed to have bovine spongiform encephalopathy. According to Feedstuffs, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency wasn't planning to formally report the finding until the agency's monthly release of reportable livestock diseases on March 10, but several sources have leaked the information and CFIA on Thursday confirmed the finding.
The cow's birth farm has already been identified by CFIA's investigation that is being carried out under international guidelines. The agency says that no part of the animal carcass entered the human or animal food chain and that the cow's age and location are "consistent with previous cases detected in Canada."
The Canadian Cattlemen's Association says that the case, which is the first case in almost a year, won't change the World Organization for Animal Health designation of Canada as a "controlled-risk" BSE country and Canadian cattle and beef exports shouldn't be affected.
The cow was identified by the Canadian BSE surveillance system. Since the first domestic case was discovered in May 2003 the system has tested more than 313,000 cattle for BSE.