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Update on APVMA response to detection of BSE (Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy) in Canada 5 June 2003

The APVMA has taken a careful and measured approach to the announcement on 22 May that the Canadian Food Inspection Agency had detected bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in a cow in Alberta province.

The APVMA wrote to all veterinary product manufacturers asking them to advise if they use bovine materials sourced from Canada in the manufacture of their products. The APVMA also examined the list of import permits for animal material that AQIS has revoked or amended as a result of the Canadian detection, to determine whether these materials could have been used in veterinary medicines manufactured in Australia.

In response to this information, the APVMA conducted risk assessments on several products. To date, no products have been shown to hold a risk for Australia.

The APVMA will continue to monitor the matter, and will conduct further risk assessments if the BSE situation in Canada changes.