Alberta Beef Producers call for TB financial support

Photo: File

With cattle under quarantine in parts of Alberta after a TB case was discovered in an animal from that province at a U.S. slaughter facility, the bills are starting to stack up.

Alberta Beef Producers (ABP) recently said in an online publication that a significant number of herds have been quarantined and the producers notified. They also noted the number of herds quarantined could increase as the tracebacks of animals in contact with any positive animals over the last five years proceed.

As that happens the bills are beginning to pile up for those producers, and ABP is calling for help to offset the costs.

“We are working with the provincial and federal government to secure financial support to help producers cover the costs of holding and feeding quarantine animals, as well as the costs of lost marketing opportunities for these cattle,” ABP wrote.

In late September, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) notified the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) that a case of bovine tuberculosis had been detected in a cow from Alberta when it was slaughtered in the U.S.

CFIA is currently investigating the outbreak, including tracing animals that may have been exposed to the infected animal. The preliminary testing of the index herd has been completed and they are awaiting the results of these tests. Testing of other herds that had direct contact with the infected animal is proceeding.

ABP is encouraging the CFIA and the Alberta government to provide an effective, rapid, and thorough investigation of this case. We want the investigation completed as quickly as possible so producers can take steps to appropriately manage the quarantined cattle.

Bovine tuberculosis is a federally reportable disease and Canada is considered to be officially free of the disease.

This finding does not impact that status, unless another case is confirmed within 48 months. Other animals testing positive as a result of this investigation do not count as a separate case, they are considered part of the first case.

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