THE Saudi Ministry of Environment, Water and Agriculture has imposed a temporary ban on the import of cattle from Spain following the detection of mad cow disease in the country.
The ministry imposed the ban after the World Organisation for Animal Health confirmed a recent case of mad cow disease in Spain.
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.
The mad cow disease is a fatal neurodegenerative disease in cattle that may be passed to humans who have eaten infected flesh.
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.