Mad Cow Disease Scrutinized

Alabama officials are looking to assure people that the state's beef supply is safe a day after a case of Mad Cow Disease was confirmed there.

Agriculture officials say the suspect cow never entered the food chain.

Cattle farmers in Alabama say they're not overly concerned their business is going to be affected.

The cattle industry is perhaps the safest it has ever been, according to Louis Watts of the Sumter County Cattlemen's Association. He says the numbers show that you are more likely to be in a car accident than to contract Mad Cow Disease.

"For instance, in the last two years they've tested 644,000 head of cattle and only two cases have come up. And these are just the ones they thought would be at high risk," said Watts.

The good news for cattle farmers is prices for beef managed to remain steady in trading Tuesday, despite the announcement Monday.

Agriculture department officials have not disclosed where in Alabama the diseased cow was discovered, but it is of the Santa Gertrudis breed. The cow was believed to be about ten years old and had spent less than a year on that particular farm.

The farm is now under an informal quarantine. No other cattle on it have been diagnosed with the disease. It is the third confirmed case of the disease in the U.S.


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