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From: TSS ()
Date: February 3, 2007 at 8:49 am PST


Enhanced Animal Heath Protection from BSE
The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) is enhancing regulations to more quickly eliminate bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), or mad cow disease, from Canada.

In infected cattle, BSE concentrates in certain tissues known as specified risk material (SRM). As a public health protection, these tissues are removed from all cattle slaughtered for human consumption. To limit BSE spread among cattle, the Government of Canada banned most proteins, including SRM, from cattle feed in 1997. To provide further animal health protection, as of July 12, 2007, SRM are also banned from all animal feeds, pet foods and fertilizers.

Fact Sheet - Enhanced Animal Health Protection from BSE

If you handle, transport or dispose of cattle carcasses, you have new responsibilities as of July 12, 2007. It is important that you are prepared. Select the category that applies to you to learn more:

Bovine practitioners
Cattle producers
Feed manufacturers
Anyone using salvaged livestock material as feed for pets or other animals
Waste management facilities
To order hard copies of Enhanced Animal Protection from BSE materials, call 1-800-442-2342.


but failed to ever implement the damn thing. ...TSS

Press Release
Monday, Jan. 26, 2004
FDA Press Office

Expanded "Mad Cow" Safeguards Announced
to Strengthen Existing Firewalls Against BSE Transmission
HHS Secretary Tommy G. Thompson today announced several new public health measures, to be implemented by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), to strengthen significantly the multiple existing firewalls that protect Americans from exposure to the agent thought to cause bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE, also known as mad cow disease) and that help prevent the spread of BSE in U.S. cattle.

The existing multiple firewalls, developed by both the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and HHS, have been extremely effective in protecting the American consumer from exposure to BSE. The first firewall is based on import controls started in 1989. A second firewall is surveillance of the U.S. cattle population for the presence of BSE, a USDA firewall that led to the finding of the BSE cow in December. The third firewall is FDA's 1997 animal feed ban, which is the critical safeguard to help prevent the spread of BSE through cattle herds by prohibiting the feeding of most mammalian protein to ruminant animals, including cattle. The fourth firewall, recently announced by USDA, makes sure that no bovine tissues known to be at high risk for carrying the agent of BSE enter the human food supply regulated by USDA. The fifth firewall is effective response planning to contain the potential for any damage from a BSE positive animal, if one is discovered. This contingency response plan, which had been developed over the past several years, was initiated immediately upon the discovery of a BSE positive cow in Washington State December 23.

The new safeguards being announced today are science-based and further bolster these already effective safeguards.

Specifically, HHS intends to ban from human food (including dietary supplements), and cosmetics a wide range of bovine-derived material so that the same safeguards that protect Americans from exposure to the agent of BSE through meat products regulated by USDA also apply to food products that FDA regulates.

FDA will also prohibit certain currently allowed feeding and manufacturing practices involving feed for cattle and other ruminant animals. These additional measures will further strengthen FDA's 1997 "animal feed" rule.

"Today's actions will make strong public health protections against BSE even stronger," Secretary Thompson said. "Although the current animal feed rule provides a strong barrier against the further spread of BSE, we must never be satisfied with the status quo where the health and safety of our animals and our population is at stake. The science and our own experience and knowledge in this area are constantly evolving. Small as the risk may already be, this is the time to make sure the public is protected to the greatest extent possible."

"Today we are bolstering our BSE firewalls to protect the public," said FDA Commissioner Mark B. McClellan, M.D., Ph.D. "We are further strengthening our animal feed rule, and we are taking additional steps to further protect the public from being exposed to any potentially risky materials from cattle. FDA's vigorous inspection and enforcement program has helped us achieve a compliance rate of more than 99 percent with the feed ban rule, and we intend to increase our enforcement efforts to assure compliance with our enhanced regulations. Finally, we are continuing to assist in the development of new technologies that will help us in the future improve even further these BSE protections. With today's actions, FDA will be doing more than ever before to protect the public against BSE by eliminating additional potential sources of BSE exposure."

To implement these new protections, FDA will publish two interim final rules that will take effect immediately upon publication, although there will be an opportunity for public comment after publication.

The first interim final rule will ban the following materials from FDA-regulated human food, (including dietary supplements) and cosmetics:

Any material from "downer" cattle. ("Downer" cattle are animals that cannot walk.)
Any material from "dead" cattle. ("Dead" cattle are cattle that die on the farm (i.e. before reaching the slaughter plant);
Specified Risk Materials (SRMs) that are known to harbor the highest concentrations of the infectious agent for BSE, such as the brain, skull, eyes, and spinal cord of cattle 30 months or older, and a portion of the small intestine and tonsils from all cattle, regardless of their age or health; and
The product known as mechanically separated beef, a product which may contain SRMs. Meat obtained by Advanced Meat Recovery (an automated system for cutting meat from bones), may be used since USDA regulations do not allow the presence of SRMs in this product.
The second interim final rule is designed to lower even further the risk that cattle will be purposefully or inadvertently fed prohibited protein. It was the feeding of such protein to cattle that was the route of disease transmission that led to the BSE epidemic in United Kingdom cattle in the 1980's and 1990's.

This interim final rule will implement four specific changes in FDA's present animal feed rule. First, the rule will eliminate the present exemption in the feed rule that allows mammalian blood and blood products to be fed to other ruminants as a protein source. Recent scientific evidence suggests that blood can carry some infectivity for BSE.

Second, the rule will also ban the use of "poultry litter" as a feed ingredient for ruminant animals. Poultry litter consists of bedding, spilled feed, feathers, and fecal matter that are collected from living quarters where poultry is raised. This material is then used in cattle feed in some areas of the country where cattle and large poultry raising operations are located near each other. Poultry feed may legally contain protein that is prohibited in ruminant feed, such as bovine meat and bone meal. The concern is that spillage of poultry feed in the chicken house occurs and that poultry feed (which may contain protein prohibited in ruminant feed) is then collected as part of the "poultry litter" and added to ruminant feed.

Third, the rule will ban the use of "plate waste" as a feed ingredient for ruminants. Plate waste consists of uneaten meat and other meat scraps that are currently collected from some large restaurant operations and rendered into meat and bone meal for animal feed. The use of "plate waste" confounds FDA's ability to analyze ruminant feeds for the presence of prohibited proteins, compromising the Agency's ability to fully enforce the animal feed rule.

Fourth, the rule will further minimize the possibility of cross-contamination of ruminant and non-ruminant animal feed by requiring equipment, facilities or production lines to be dedicated to non-ruminant animal feeds if they use protein that is prohibited in ruminant feed. Currently, some equipment, facilities and production lines process or handle prohibited and non-prohibited materials and make both ruminant and non-ruminant feed -- a practice which could lead to cross-contamination.

To accompany these new measures designed to provide a further layer of protection against BSE, FDA will in 2004 step up its inspections of feed mills and renderers. FDA will itself conduct 2,800 inspections and will make its resources go even further by continuing to work with state agencies to fund 3,100 contract inspections of feed mill and renderers and other firms that handle animal feed and feed ingredients. Through partnerships with states, FDA will also receive data on 700 additional inspections, for a total of 3,800 state contract and partnership inspections in 2004 alone, including annual inspections of 100 percent of all known renderers and feed mills that process products containing materials prohibited in ruminant feed.

"We have worked hard with the rendering and animal feed production industries to try and achieve full compliance with the animal feed rule," said Dr. McClellan, "and through strong education and a vigorous enforcement campaign, backed by additional inspections and resources, we intend to maintain a high level of compliance."

Dr. McClellan also noted that, in response to finding a BSE positive cow in Washington state December 23, FDA inspected and traced products at 22 facilities related to that positive cow or products from the cow, including feed mills, farms, dairy farms, calf feeder lots, slaughter houses, meat processors, transfer stations, and shipping terminals. Moreover, FDA has conducted inspections at the rendering facilities that handled materials from the positive cow, and they were found to be fully in compliance with FDA's feed rule.

To further strengthen protections for Americans, FDA/HHS intends to work with Congress to consider proposals to assure that these important protective measures will be implemented as effectively as possible.

FDA is also continuing its efforts to assist in the development of better BSE science, to achieve the same or greater confidence in BSE protection at a lower cost. For example, to enhance the ability of our public health system to detect prohibited materials in animal feed, FDA will continue to support the development and evaluation of diagnostic tests to identify prohibited materials. These tests would offer a quick and reliable method of testing animal feeds for prohibited materials and for testing other products for contamination with the agent thought to cause BSE.

FDA has publicly discussed many of the measures being announced today with stakeholders in workshops, videoconferences, and public meetings. In addition, FDA published an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking in November 2002 (available online at concerning possible changes to the animal feed rule.

Comprehensive information about FDA's work on BSE and links to other related websites are available at


For Immediate Release
July 9, 2004
FSIS Press Office
APHIS Press Office
FDA Media Relations

(202) 720-9113
(202) 734-7799
(301) 827-6242

USDA and HHS Strengthen Safeguards Against
Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy
WASHINGTON, July 9, 2004--HHS Secretary Tommy G. Thompson and Agriculture Secretary Ann M. Veneman today announced three actions being taken to further strengthen existing safeguards that protect consumers against the agent that causes bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE, also known as "mad cow disease").

The three documents on display today include:

A joint USDA Food Safety & Inspection Service (FSIS), USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) notice that asks for public comment on additional preventive actions that are being considered concerning BSE;
An interim final FDA rule that prohibits the use of certain cattle-derived materials in human food (including dietary supplements) and cosmetics; and
A proposed FDA rule on recordkeeping requirements for the interim final rule relating to this ban.
"Today's actions continue our strong commitment to public health protections against BSE," Secretary Thompson said. "Although our current rules are strong, when it comes to public health and safety we cannot be content with the status quo. We must continue to make sure the public is protected to the greatest extent possible."

"This Administration is committed to science-based measures to enhance and protect public health," Veneman said. "The advance notice of proposed rulemaking will allow the public the opportunity to provide their input."

"The series of firewalls already in place offer excellent protection against BSE," said Acting Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, Dr. Lester M. Crawford. "With these additional measures, we will make a strong system even stronger by putting into effect the most comprehensive, science-based improvements possible."

The steps already taken have been effective in protecting the American consumer from exposure to BSE. Import controls on live cattle and certain ruminant products were put in place more than 15 years ago. In 1997, FDA finalized its animal feed ban, which has been the critical safeguard to stop the spread of BSE through the U.S. cattle population by prohibiting the feeding of most mammalian protein to cattle and other ruminant animals. USDA implemented additional measures in January to ensure that no cattle tissues known to be high risk for carrying the BSE agent are included in USDA-regulated products. Finally, as became evident last December, there is a contingency response plan, developed over the past several years, that is launched immediately to contain any potential damage after a BSE positive animal is found.

To allow interested parties and stakeholders the opportunity to comment on the additional regulatory and policy measures under consideration, USDA's APHIS and FSIS, along with the FDA, developed an advance notice of proposed rulemaking that includes several additional actions the federal government is considering regarding BSE.

The ANPR also provides the public a succinct report on the work of the international review team (IRT) convened by Secretary Veneman to review the U.S. response to the single case of BSE in the United States (in a cow imported from Canada), along with a summary of the many actions already taken by each agency on BSE.

USDA's FSIS continues to seek and address comments on actions taken in relation to the BSE mitigation measures and put in place in January 2004. FSIS is also specifically seeking comments on whether a country's BSE status should be taken into account when determining whether a country's meat inspection system is equivalent to the U.S. regulations including the provisions in the FSIS interim final rules.

USDA's APHIS is specifically seeking comments on the implementation of a national animal identification system. In April, USDA announced the availability of $18 million in Commodity Credit Corporation funding to expedite development of a national animal identification system, which is currently underway. APHIS is inviting comments on when and under what circumstances the program should move from voluntary to mandatory, and which species should be covered now and over the long term.

The ANPRM also requests comment on the following measures related to animal feed, which is regulated by FDA:

removing specified risk materials (SRM's) from all animal feed, including pet food, to control the risks of cross contamination throughout feed manufacture and distribution and on the farm due to misfeeding;
requiring dedicated equipment or facilities for handling and storing feed and ingredients during manufacturing and transportation, to prevent cross contamination;
prohibiting the use of all mammalian and poultry protein in ruminant feed, to prevent cross contamination; and prohibiting materials from non-ambulatory disabled cattle and dead stock from use in all animal feed.
FDA has reached a preliminary conclusion that it should propose to remove SRM's from all animal feed and is currently working on a proposal to accomplish this goal. Comments on these issues raised in the ANPRM are due to FDA next month.

FDA today also issued an interim final rule that prohibits the use of cattle-derived materials that can carry the BSE-infectious agent in human foods, including certain meat-based products and dietary supplements, and in cosmetics. These highÇrisk cattle-derived materials include SRM's that are known to harbor concentrations of the infectious agent for BSE, such as the brain, skull, eyes, and spinal cord of cattle 30 months of age or older, and a portion of the small intestine and tonsils from all cattle, regardless of their age. Prohibited high-risk bovine materials also include material from non-ambulatory disabled cattle, the small intestine of all cattle, material from cattle not inspected and passed for human consumption, and mechanically separated beef.

This action is consistent with the recent interim final rule issued by USDA declaring these materials to be inedible (unfit for human food) and prohibiting their use as human food.

FDA's interim final rule, in conjunction with interim final rules issued by FSIS in January 2004, will minimize human exposure to materials that scientific studies have demonstrated are likely to contain the BSE agent when derived from cattle that are infected with the disease. Consumption of products contaminated with the agent that causes BSE is the likely cause of a similar disease in people called variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease.

Although FDA's interim final rule has the full force and effect of law and takes effect immediately upon publication in the Federal Register, FDA is also asking for public comment on it.

In conjunction with the publication of the interim final rule, FDA is also proposing to require that manufacturers and processors of FDA-regulated human food and cosmetics containing cattle-derived material maintain records showing that prohibited materials are not used in their products. FDA is taking this action because records documenting the absence of such materials are important to ensure compliance with requirements of the interim final rule.

Publication of this USDA-FDA notice, as well as the two FDA documents, is scheduled for mid-July in the Federal Register. Comments should be submitted as directed in the addresses section of each document. Each document also provides information about how and where comments received may be viewed.


Note to Reporters: USDA news releases, program announcements and media advisories are available on the Internet. Go to the APHIS home page at and click on the "News" button.

HHS news releases are available online at; FDA news releases can be found at, which will also provide links to the documents discussed in this release.


JANUARY 27, 2004




FDA Week

August 12, 2005

SECTION: Vol. 11 No. 32

LENGTH: 368 words



FDA is backing off its previous promise to ban animal blood, poultry litter and plate waste from animal feed to protect against the spread of mad cow disease.

FDA Commissioner Lester Crawford unveiled the change Monday (Aug. at the 51st International Congress on Meat Science and Technology.

"Earlier last year we had announced other potential changes being considered, including the prohibition of mammalian blood and blood products in ruminant feed, the prohibition of poultry litter, and the prohibition of plate waste," according to the printed version of Crawford's speech. "But we are now focusing our efforts on specified risk materials."

House Democrats asked Crawford about the feed ban at an Appropriations Committee late last month, but Crawford danced around the questions. He told lawmakers FDA was going to issue an interim final rule on the feed ban, but at the meat industry conference he said the agency is issuing a proposed rule. Another FDA official also said the agency is issuing a proposed rule, not an interim final rule.

Crawford told the meat conference attendees that the feed ban proposed rule could call for prohibiting brains and spinal cords from cattle older than 29 months.

On Jan. 26, 2004, then-HHS Secretary Tommy Thompson said FDA was going to ban the practice of feeding cattle animal blood, poultry litter and plate waste. FDA issued a press release the same day providing details about the interim final rules.

FDA was following the lead of the U.S. Agriculture Department, which had announced weeks earlier that it was tightening regulations to prevent the spread of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), or mad cow disease.

However, a Public Citizen source says the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) kept FDA from banning blood from animal feed by refusing to give FDA the emergency designation needed to quickly put the rules into effect (see FDA Week, July 13). Although the USDA implemented its new regulations within weeks, FDA waited months before finally issuing an "advanced notice of proposed rule making" that requested suggestions on how, or if, it should change the feed ban.

The proposed rule FDA is expected to issue also will have to pass through OMB.

LOAD-DATE: August 12, 2005

Date: October 18, 2006 at 7:44 am PST

Former FDA Commissioner Pleads Guilty to Conflict of Interest and Making False Financial Disclosures

WASHINGTON, Oct. 17, 2006 - Lester M. Crawford, a former Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), has pled guilty to a Conflict of Interest charge and Making False Financial Disclosures to the U.S. Senate and the Executive Branch, announced U.S. Attorney Jeffrey A. Taylor and Inspector General Daniel Levinson, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Crawford entered his guilty plea to the two misdemeanor charges this afternoon in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia before U.S. Magistrate Judge Deborah Robinson. Crawford is scheduled to be sentenced on January 22, 2007. He faces a sentence of up to one year in prison on each charge.

"One of the most important principles of our ethics laws is that public officials cannot have a financial interest in any decision that they make,” stated U.S. Attorney Taylor. “Lester Crawford, who held one of the most important jobs in government, blatantly violated these principles. Today, he is being held accountable for his actions."

Inspector General Levinson stated, "Any Government official's disregard of the conflict of interest laws undermines the integrity of the rules of conduct established for all those in Government. Taxpayers must have confidence that administrators of Government programs will be objective and free from improper influences in carrying out their official duties."

Crawford, 68, of Chevy Chase, Maryland, held some of the most senior positions in the FDA. He served as Deputy Commissioner between February 25, 2002 and March 26, 2004, when he became Acting Commissioner. On February 15, 2005, Crawford was nominated to become Commissioner. On July 18, 2005, the U.S. Senate confirmed Crawford, who remained Commissioner until September 30, 2005.

As a senior FDA employee, Crawford was required to file regular Public Financial Disclosure Reports, known as Standard Form SF 278s. Schedule A of the SF 278 required the filer to list all investment assets having a value exceeding $1,000 that were held by the filer or the filer's spouse, as well as sources of income exceeding $200 earned by the filer during the applicable reporting period.

Each year, ethics officials at the Department of Health and Human Services reviewed Crawford's SF 278s to ensure that he and his wife were not holding stocks or stock options of companies that were "significantly regulated organizations," which federal regulations defined as organizations for which the sales of products regulated by the FDA constitute ten percent or more of annual gross sales in the organization's previous fiscal year. Any FDA employee who was required to file an SF 278 could not hold a "financial interest," such as stock or stock options, in a significantly regulated organization.

Crawford's nomination as Commissioner required confirmation by the U.S. Senate and was considered by the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions. As a nominee, Crawford was required to submit two financial disclosure documents to the Committee: an SF 278 and a Statement for Completion by Presidential Nominees. Crawford filed both forms in February 2005.

Crawford’s plea to Making False Writings is based on his failure to disclose his and his wife’s ownership of stock in “significantly regulated organizations” to the Senate Committee and to the Executive Branch.

During the relevant time periods, Crawford and/or his wife owned forbidden stocks in the following “significantly regulated organizations”: Pepsico, Sysco, Kimberly-Clark, and Embrex.

Crawford filed a number of disclosure forms and other false writings in which he did not declare his and his wife’s ownership of forbidden stocks and stock options. Specifically,

•July 1, 2004. In this SF 278, Crawford disclosed ownership of Sysco and Kimberly-Clark stock. When an HHS ethics official inquired about Crawford’s ownership of this stock, Crawford responded in a December 28, 2004 email that the stocks in "Sysco and Kimberly-Clark have in fact been sold." That statement was false.

• February 23, 2005. Crawford did not disclose on this SF 278 his income from a November 17, 2004 exercise of Embrex stock options or the Crawfords' ownership of Kimberly-Clark or Sysco stock.

• February 25, 2005. Crawford failed to disclose in his nominee Statement to the Senate Committee his income from the exercise of Embrex stock options in October 2003 and November 2004. Crawford also did not disclose his remaining Embrex stock options.

Crawford’s ownership of Sysco and Pepsico stock and his role as Chairman of the FDA’s Obesity Working Group (“OWG”) gave rise to the Conflict of Interest charge, to which he has also pled guilty. On February 11, 2004, Crawford and the OWG's Vice Chairman submitted the OWG's final report and recommendations, entitled "Calories Count: Report of the Working Group on Obesity," to then-FDA Commissioner Mark McClellan. The report contained many recommendations, including encouraging manufacturers to re-label serving sizes, noting as an example that "a 20 oz bottle of soda that currently states 110 calories per serving and 2.5 servings per bottle could be labeled as 275 calories per bottle." The FDA publicly released "Calories Count" on March 12, 2004.

On June 3, 2004, Crawford testified before the House of Representatives Committee on Government Reform about the government's role in combating obesity. In his testimony, Crawford outlined the OWG's recommendations and again stressed the importance of re-labeling serving sizes for sodas.

During the entire period from the formation of the OWG to the date of Crawford's congressional testimony, Crawford and his wife owned 1,400 shares of Pepsico stock, worth a minimum of about $62,000, and 2,500 shares of Sysco stock, worth a minimum of about $78,000. Pepsico, a leading manufacturer of soft drinks and snack foods, and its shareholders had a financial interest in the OWG's conclusions and recommendations. Sysco, a leading manufacturer of food products, and its shareholders had a financial interest in the OWG's conclusions and recommendations.

There is no evidence that the OWG's conclusions were altered because of the Crawfords' ownership of Pepsico or Sysco stock.

Following the announcement of Crawford’s departure from office, Senators Mike Enzi and Edward Kennedy and Representatives Maurice Hinchey, Marcy Kaptur, Lynn Woolsey, Raúl Grijalva, and Sam Farr asked that the Inspector General investigate this matter.

In announcing today’s guilty plea, U.S. Attorney Taylor and Inspector General Levinson commended Inspector Thomas Sowinski of the Inspector General’s office for his outstanding investigation of this case. They also thanked the Senate Legal Counsel’s Office for the help that it provided in the investigation. Finally, they commended Assistant U.S. Attorneys Howard Sklamberg and Timothy Lynch, who prosecuted the case, and intern Vi Do, who assisted in the investigation.

For Information, Contact Public Affairs
Channing Phillips (202) 514-6


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