EU may relax pig BSE feed rule
Europe will never lift its ban on using animal protein
in cattle feed after bitter experiences fighting mad cow disease but might
consider allowing cross-feed between pigs and poultry at some stage in the
future, the Guardian reports.
In a recent interview, EU Health Commissioner Androulla Vassiliou, told
Reuters that experts at the EU's executive arm were compiling a report on the
feasibility and risk of relaxing rules so that some animal proteins may be used
in animal feed. The study's results are due in late
The EU banned the use of meat
and bone meal (MBM) in cattle feed in 1994 after scientists concluded that
bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), or mad cow disease, was spread by feed
contaminated by ruminant protein in the form of MBM.
Last year, EU
scientists examined the BSE-related public health risks of using certain animal
proteins in animal feed, particularly pig protein being fed to poultry and feed
containing poultry protein being fed to pigs.
They said the risks to human health would be negligible,
since BSE had not yet been identified in pigs or poultry under natural
conditions -- making the risk of BSE being transmitted to pigs by feeding them
poultry-processed proteins, or vice-versa, fairly slim at
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