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FDA *Draft* rule is out with a 10 day comment period.
USDA adds the Netherlands to BSE ban

FDA *Draft* rule

17 Apr 1997
The draft rule for ruminant-to-ruminant feed ban is out with a 10 day comment period. See today's Federal Register or via FDA-CVM homepage.
Major Points [kindly provided by Dave Harlan, PAS]:

1) Mammalian tissue to Ruminant feed prohibition
2) Tissues exempt:
   a) Blood & blood products
   b) Gelatin (including AA's & dical derived during gelatin manf.
   c) Inspected and processed meat products(plate scraps, casings)
   d) Milk & milk products
   c) Pure porcine proteins
3) Enforcement via paper trail & documentation
4) Label: "Do not feed to cattle or other ruminants"
           (Pet food exempt)
5) Requires clean-out procedures and/or separate
          equipment/facilities for feed mills, blenders, etc.
6) GRAS status has been lost for non-exempt mammalian proteins in ruminant feed.No loss of GRAS status [Generally Regarded As Safe]
7) Future exemptions provided:
   a) Validated deactivation process
   b) Validated TSE test method
   c) Validated controls on manufacturing that minimizes risk
8) Two year records retention (includes producers)
9) Comments due by April 28, 1997 4:30 pm EDST

 All comments should be sent to the Dockets
            Management Branch (HFA-305), Food and Drug
            Administration, 12420 Parklawn Drive, Room 1-23,
            Rockville, MD 20857. Comments may also be faxed to the
            Dockets Management Branch on 301-594-3215. Please
            identify comments with the Docket Number 96N-0135.
The Beef America (the new organizational name for NCBA) is, in fact, strongly in favor of strict mammal-ruminant feed restrictions. The opponents are principally the renderers, with some support from slaughterers.

USDA Adds the Netherlands to BSE List

APHIS Press Release 4/14/97 Dawn Kent (301) 734-7255

USDA news releases, program announcements, and media advisories are available on the Internet. To receive APHIS press releases automatically, send an e-mail message, leave the subject blank, and in the text section, type subscribe press_releases.

WASHINGTON, April 14, 1997--The U.S. Department of Agriculture has restricted the importation of fresh, chilled, and frozen meat and other animal products and byproducts from ruminants that have been in the Netherlands because of bovine spongiform encephalopathy.

The Netherlands' Ministry of Agriculture has confirmed two cases of BSE in native cows. In order to reduce the risk of introducing BSE into the United States, USDA has added the Netherlands to the list of countries where BSE is known to exist.

"We cannot afford to take any chances with BSE. This action is necessary to minimize the risk of introducing the disease into the United States," said Joan M. Arnoldi, deputy administrator for veterinary services with the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, a part of USDA's marketing and regulatory programs mission area.

Other countries affected with BSE include the United Kingdom, France, the Republic of Ireland, Oman, Portugal, and Switzerland. No case of BSE has ever been diagnosed in the United States. Therefore, APHIS' efforts have been proactive and preventative. APHIS, in cooperation with USDA's Food Safety and Inspection Service, has taken aggressive measures in BSE surveillance, prevention, education, and response.

APHIS prohibited in 1989 the importation of live ruminants from countries where BSE is known to exist in native cattle. Other products derived from ruminants, such as beef, fetal bovine serum, bone meal, meat-and-bone meal, blood meal, offal, fats, and glands, are also restricted entry into the United States except under special conditions or under permit for scientific or research purposes.

Notice of this interim rule is scheduled for publication in the April 15 Federal Register and became effective April 10. Consideration will be given to comments on the interim rule received on or before June 16. An original and three copies should be sent to Docket No. 97-034-1, Regulatory Analysis and Development, PPD, APHIS, Suite 3C03, 4700 River Road Unit 118, Riverdale, Md. 20737-1238.

Comments may be reviewed at USDA, Room 1141, South Building, 14th Street and Independence Avenue, S.W., Washington, D.C., between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, except holidays. Persons wishing to review comments are requested to call ahead at (202) 690-2817 to facilitate entry into the comment reading room.

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