A panel with the World Organization for Animal Health, or OIE, is expected to recommend the U. S. be designated as a "controlled risk" region for BSE. This classification is considered favorable in the international community and should help pave the way for trade of all U.S. beef and beef products regardless of age.
In March 2005, NCBA asked USDA to apply for a new BSE classification. The U. S. tested more than 750,000 high-risk animals as part of its 30-month enhanced BSE surveillance program and found only two native cases. In addition, the U. S. has exceeded all OIE requirements in implementing BSE safeguards to ensure a safe product and prevent the spread of the disease in the national cattle herd.
OIE will meet in May for its annual general session. At that time, 167 member countries will vote on the proposed U.S. classification.
Source: Kansas Livestock Association