France lifts ban of British beef

France decided on 2 October to lift its ban on British beef, a ban imposed six years ago over fears of the deadly ‘mad cow disease’.

France decided on 2 October to lift its ban on British beef, a ban imposed six years ago over fears of the deadly 'mad cow disease'. The decision follows an opinion from France's food safety agency (AFSSA) last week that British beef "posed a negligible risk of causing the human form of mad cow, variant Creutzfeldt Jakob Disease (vCJD)". vCJD has killed more than 100 people, mostly in the UK but also a few in France. The ban was imposed six year ago, easing it in the summer of 1999. All EU member states agreed to comply, except France. The European Court of Justice ruled the continued ban in France as illegal in December 2001. The ban almost destroyed the UK's livestock industry.

France added it wanted all EU member states to conduct BSE tests on cattle aged more than 24 months, the practice in France, Germany, Italy and Spain. Other countries only test animals over 30 months.

 

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