USDA Scales Back Tests For Mad Cow Disease - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

7/20/06-Washington, D.C.

USDA Scales Back Tests For Mad Cow Disease

The Agriculture Department says there's little reason to keep testing for mad cow disease at the same level. So the U-S-D-A is rolling back its testing program to about one-tenth of what it has been for more than two years.

Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns (JOH'-hanz) says the tests suggest there is a "very, very low level" of the disease known as B-S-E in the U-S.

The new level will be around 110 tests per day, compared with the previous thousand-tests-a-day conducted since the first the first American mad cow case was found in 2003.

Johanns says a panel of independent scientists agrees with the department's analysis of the minimal risk from the brain-wasting disorder.

Copyright 2006 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Posted By 6pm News Producer Kelly Hefelfinger khefelfinger@kltv.com

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