Secure Beef Supply Plan

December 9, 2015 09:16 AM

By: John Maday, editor of Bovine Veterinarian 

If foot and mouth disease (FMD) were to break out in the United States, the disruption to our cattle industry would be significant, especially if the disease is not quickly identified and confined to a small area. Plans are underway, however, to minimize that disruption. During the recent Academy of Veterinary Consultants conference, James Roth, DVM, PhD, DACVM, director of Iowa State University’s Center for Food Security and Public Health (CFSPH), updated veterinarians on the Secure Beef Supply Plan, a USDA-funded initiative involving experts from Iowa State and several other universities.

Roth notes that “stamping out,” a strategy for quickly culling and disposing of infected and potentially exposed animals, could be effective in the case of a small, confined outbreak. If however, FMD were to spread to multiple areas, including large feedyards, the stamping out strategy would become logistically and economically impractical. In that case, some combination of stamping out, biosecurity, vaccination and slaughter of exposed animals would come into play. The Secure Beef Supply (SBS) Plan intends to help maintain business continuity for beef producers and processors in event of such an outbreak.

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