Bovine TB confirmed in Michigan dairy cow

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Officials with the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) confirmed on Thursday that tests completed during slaughter surveillance confirmed bovine tuberculosis (TB) in a Saginaw County, Mich., dairy cow.

"Slaughter surveillance is an important part of the food safety net. USDA's Food Safety Inspection Service is charged with removing anything that looks suspicious from the food system," Kevin Besey, MDARD's Food and Dairy Division Director, said in a news release. "Although pasteurization kills the bacteria and is an important component of public health, MDARD will not permit milk from reactor animals to be sold for human or animal consumption."

Saginaw County is considered a bovine TB-free county. Steven Halstead, MDARD's state veterinarian, said that “in accordance with our bovine TB response plan, the farm has been quarantined and a whole-herd test conducted.”

“We are moving quickly to stamp out and contain the disease at this one location," Halstead said.

Michigan lost its status of being bovine TB-free in 2000 and officials have since taken steps to block transmission of the disease. Now, 13 years later, bovine TB is endemic in a limited, four-county area in Northeastern Lower Michigan called the Modified Accredited Zone (MAZ).

Click here to read the news release.

Last June, a case of bovine TB was found in a dairy herd in Alpena County, Mich., one of the counties included in MAZ. In 2002, 23 beef and dairy herds were infected by bovine TB, marking the first cases of disease outside of the MAZ. Read more here.



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