Scottish beef can now be sold anywhere globally after the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) recognises the BSE risk from beef raised in Scotland is at the safest level available – negligible risk. England and Welsh beef remains at controlled risk BSE status and will not be reviewed before 2020.
Rural Secretary Fergus Ewing who was applauded by the Scottish Association of Meat Wholesalers for his help with the bid for approval, said:
‘This is reward for years of hard work from the Scottish Association of Meat Wholesalers, producers, our red meat businesses, vets, and this government all of whom have worked tirelessly to build a failsafe system which protects our animal and public health. Scotland’s meat exports are currently thriving and this certification stands us in good stead for our exporters to increase Scottish Beef exports even further.’
The president of the Scottish Association of Meat Wholesalers (SAMW) described the work of Fergus Ewing and his staff as ‘invaluable’.
Here’s some background to the story I wrote earlier in the year.
Some readers may remember how BSE started. If not see this from Frederick A. Murphy, DVM, PhD, Dean of the School of Veterinary Medicine at the University of California in mad-cow.org:
‘In the early 1980s in England the rendering process (by which livestock carcasses are converted to various products, including protein supplements for livestock feed) was changed. Earlier, a solvent extraction step had been used to extract fats (tallow); this step was stopped when the price of the petroleum-based solvents used to extract fats went up. The infectious agent is solvent-sensitive. Otherwise, the infectious agent is extremely hardy — it can survive boiling and many disinfectants, but is readily destroyed by extremely high temperature (such as in an autoclave), or by oxidizing agents, or by solvents.’