BSE found in Finland

7 December 2001

BSE found in Finland

By Philip Clarke, Europe editor

FINLAND has reported its first case of BSE in a six-year-old dairy cow that was subject to emergency slaughter in the north of the country.

It is understood that the animal was born in Finland and had never been fed meat and bonemeal.

All bovines on the farm of origin, plus all cohorts and progeny of the BSE positive animal have been destroyed.

The appearance of the disease signals an end to the special concessions Finland currently enjoys in respect of EU testing and control measures.

Only about 3% of the national herd is currently tested, or up to 25 000 cows annually.

If the full scope of EU rules on testing over-30-month and “at-risk” cattle were applied, up to 125 000 animals would need testing.

Following the announcement, neighbouring Estonia imposed an immediate five-year ban on imports of live cattle and beef from Finland, according to wire service reports.

The appearance of BSE in Finland means only Sweden and Austria remain free of the disease in the EU.

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