Should The Animal Protein Feed Ban Be Expanded?

US - The latest case of BSE in Canada has rekindled calls for a total ban on the use of any animal protein in any type of animal feed.

Currently, the United States and Canada do not allow the use of these products in feed for ruminants but it is allowed for simple-stomach species.

Critics say this is too risky, that there are facilities that manufacture feed for both types of animals and there is always the chance of cross-contamination.

Tom Cook is president of the National Renderers Association, he says the call for a total ban is, “Unnecessary and premature.” Cook says for starters, they have yet to determine if the six-year-old cow in British Columbia was, in fact, infected by contaminated feed. He adds the firewalls are in place and, “There is no need to throw the baby out with the bathwater.”

As for the risk of contamination, Cook says most of the plants that process feed do not make feed for both ruminants and non-ruminants. When you get down to the few plants that do process both, “There are guidelines in place, there are regulations from FDA as far a clean-out procedures and it is not fair to deprive those companies that have good processes in place to prevent cross-contamination, from denying them of that practice.”

Cook adds that if the use of animal proteins were completely banned, it would be the livestock producer that would take the hit. He says if you eliminate the market for meat & bone meal, fats and oils, “The latest figures I’ve heard, you may be taking $40 out of every cattleman’s pocket for every animal he or she sells.”

Add to that, “If the product is not rendered, if it can’t be used for that purpose, not only do you loose that value; you incur the additional expense of disposing of that material.”

Source: Brownfield
calendar icon 20 April 2006
clock icon 1 minute read
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