Thursday, September 29, 2005

Saxby Stands Up For U.S. Beef

Senator Saxby Chambliss, chairman of the Senate Ag Committee, is considering seeking trade sanctions against Japan if that nation's ban on U.S. beef isn't lifted. Japan says it's concerned about the potential for BSE, also known as Mad Cow Disease, to infect U.S. cattle. Let's look at some facts, shall we?

There have been two cows in the U.S. found to be infected with BSE. One of those was born, and spent most of its life, in Canada. The other was an older cow, born before a feed ban was instituted in the U.S. to prevent the spread of BSE.

Japan, on the other hand, has a national herd size that is only 3.6 percent the size of the U.S. herd. Yet they have seen 20 confirmed cases of BSE.

Do the math. Japan has seen 10 times the BSE cases we have. Yet we raise more than 27 times the number of cattle. Sounds like their biggest fear should be their own cattle.