Beef trade safe after tests show BSE case 'isolated'
There are no concerns over the commercial animal feed chain after final tests on a dairy cow proved positive for BSE, according to the Department of Agriculture.
The case in a rare breed Rotbunt five-year-old dairy cow that emerged two weeks ago on the farm of Joseph McArdle near Louth village has been confirmed as an "isolated" case of BSE. It is the first case in Ireland since 2013.
In total, 67 animals on the farm around the birthdate of the cow have been killed - including four offspring - and all have tested negative for BSE, commonly known as Mad Cow Disease.
"No concerns arise regarding the integrity of the commercial feed supply chain or the effectiveness of the feed control systems," the department stated.
It pointed out test results from feed on the farm were negative for meat and bonemeal - which has been banned since the 1990s, following an outbreak of BSE.
During 2009 and 2010, there were 2,500 feed samples, including 52 from suppliers to the McArdle farm, tested for the presence of meat and bone meal. All tested negative.
"The investigation has not identified anything to distinguish this case from the other cases of classical BSE that have been seen in Ireland or elsewhere. The identification of classical BSE cases after the implementation of the ban on the feeding of meal and bonemeal is not unprecedented," it stated.
Both the mother and the grandmother of the infected animal tested negative for BSE - which means they were not the source of transmission.