Mad cow disease found on a farm in Spain


A CASE of mad cow disease has been reported on a farm in Spain according to the World Organisation for Animal Health.

Of the 213 cows on the farm, only one has tested positive for BSE. The bovine has since been put down. The atypical type H form of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) – commonly known as mad cow disease- was detected in a cow in El Sahugo, Salamanca, close to the Portuguese border.

Another case of mad cow disease was reported in Castilla y Leon in March earlier this year. People cannot get mad cow disease.


But in rare cases they may get a human form of mad cow disease called variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD), which is fatal.

This can happen if you eat nerve tissue (the brain and spinal cord) of cattle that were infected with mad cow disease.

Over time, vCJD destroys the brain and spinal cord. From 1986 – 2001 more than 180,000 cattle were infected with BSE and 4.4 million slaughtered during the eradication programme in the United Kingdom.

In France, the country worst affected overall, over 300,000 cases were identified, although most were not recorded at the time.

In 1996 the first case of vCJD was reported and from 1996 – 1999 the European Union banned the export of British beef


  1. An organic dairy farmer, Mark Purdey, concluded BSE was due to the compulsory pouring of an organophosphorous compound onto the backs of cattle during a 10 year period, in order to eradicate the hibernating larvae of Warble Fly within cattle. This compound attacked the nervous system and aimed to kill the larvae which by December (the compulsory month for using the chemical, were hibernating near the spinal column).
    The jury is still out.


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