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Karen Eggert (301) 734-7280
Andrea McNally (202) 690-4178

STATEMENT BY DR. ANDREA MORGAN ON THE RECENT DETECTION OF FOOT-AND-MOUTH DISEASE IN THE UNITED KINGDOM

August 3, 2007

“USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is closely monitoring an emerging animal disease situation in the United Kingdom. Foot-and mouth-disease (FMD), a highly contagious viral disease of cattle, swine, and other cloven-hooved ruminants, has been detected on a farm in Surrey, England. FMD is not transmissible from animals to humans, but it does have serious implications for animal agriculture in any country where the disease is detected.

“Immediately, USDA is placing restrictions or prohibitions, depending on the type of product and level of processing, on all UK products derived from any FMD susceptible species. This includes any products already en route to the United States. All live ruminants and ruminant products are currently prohibited due to bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE). However, swine meat and by-products are now prohibited/restricted.

“APHIS has alerted the Department of Homeland Security’s Customs and Border Protection (CBP) that effective August 3, the United States is placing a ban on all UK products derived from any FMD susceptible species. We will be working closely with our counterparts at CBP to ensure that these products are not imported into the United States and that travelers from the United Kingdom do not bring prohibited products back to the United States.

“USDA has a strong system in place for detecting and responding to outbreaks of foreign animal diseases, including FMD in the United States. This system begins with a cadre of USDA accredited private veterinary practitioners who partner with livestock producers and APHIS to report any suspected foreign animal disease cases to state and federal officials.

"When a possible case of a foreign animal disease is reported, APHIS works with the state involved to immediately dispatch one of more than 400 specially trained foreign animal disease diagnosticians to the scene.

“We will continue to closely monitor the situation in the United Kingdom.”

For more information, visit www.aphis.usda.gov

 

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