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Cattle feed suspected to contain mad cow disease denied entry

Published on 19 March, 2007, Last updated at 04:50 GMT


Over 70 containers of meat and bone meal (MBM) as cattle feed which could spread mad cow disease have been detected and denied entry at Vietnam's customs.

Dau Ngoc Hao, deputy head of the National Animal Health Department, said thanks to information from Indonesia, the containers - from Spain, Italia, Germany, Austria and France - were found and forced to be re-exported from both the HCMC and Hai Phong ports.

Ho Chi Minh City alone this year has rejected clearance to 60 containers of MBM suspected to be made from bones of cattle infected with mad cow disease.

In most places, MBM - a powder-like brown food is no longer allowed in feed for ruminant animals as it is thought to be responsible for the disease - also known as bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) - though it is used as a low-cost meat in dog food and cat food.

It can be freely traded within the EU, where it is often burned to generate energy. MBM is produced from unusable scraps left over when animals are butchered and heated in the rendering industry.


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